Remotely activate power button?

My machine: MacBook Pro 15" A1286, core i7, 2.66 GHz

I would like to hack into the power button of my MacBook Pro. I'm using it as a server in a remote location, and sometimes it hangs/crashes. Forcing a restart by holding down the power button fixes the problem.

I would like to be able to activate the power button restart remotely (via an Arduino connected to a phone line, for example).

On older MacBook Pros that I have disassembled, there are two easily accessible wires attached to the power button and it would be no problem to hack into those wires. On this newer MBP, it's not so clear to me that there will be wires (as opposed to a ribbon connector, say), and I'd like to know what I'm going to find before I start taking it apart.

I've looked through the iFixit repair guides for this model, but I did not come across a photo of the power button from the inside.

So, my question: On this model, how is the power button connected to the rest of the machine? Wires? Ribbon connector? Something else? How difficult would it be to splice in two thin wires to the power button which lead outside of the case?

(Note: I'm aware of "wake on network access" and other software options, but these only work if the Mac is not crashed.)

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I would use the "restart after a power failure" √ box of System Preferences->Energy Saver, put a remote switch between your UPS and the box... much easier all around.

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Interesting idea. Would I need to remove the battery for this to work? I assume that if the system is sufficiently crashed/hung/discombobulated, then it won't notice that the external power went off if it still has battery power.


Correct - If you're using this as server you don't need a battery anyway. Batteries are part of the things that make a laptop "portable". FWIW it's not a good idea to keep a battery always charging anyway.


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kwalker will be eternally grateful.
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