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Can't ping public static IP from external network after office closes

By jdavis9 ·
I'm chasing a gremlin in our server / network setup. The issue is VPN stops working in the evening after the office closes. I've narrowed it down that VPN fails to connect when I'm unable to ping the static IP address of the domain server. This make sense to me that I can't VPN or Remote Desktop to the sever if I can't see the IP address. So instead of focusing on the VPN setup, I'm trying to understand why I'm unable to ping the server after a period of inactivity. It appears the server is going to "sleep". Specifically, the NIC card with the static IP assignment appears to go to sleep. The network wakes up when the first person comes to work and logs into the domain. Once the network wakes up, I'm able to ping the Static IP address from both an internal and external network. VPN then works great.

I'm running Server 2012 on a Dell PowerEdge Server, SMC cable modem with DHCP and Firewall turn off, and a Linksys smart switch with EEE turn off. I looked at the server BIOS setting and didn't see anywhere that a "wake On LAN" was enabled. The server has two Broadcom NIC cards that are teamed. I went to each NIC card's properties and turn off the option to "allow the computer to off this device to save power". I also changed the power options of the sever and set it to High Performance from Balanced. None of these changes helped.

I've focused on the NIC cards in the server but it could be a setting in the cable modem or network switch. I suspect the Server NIC cards as I came to work early today before anyone log onto the network and confirmed I was unable to ping the network externally. I then log onto the server and open an application. I checked and was still unable to ping the server externally. However, as soon as I log on to my PC and joined the domain, I was able to then able to ping the server externally. The server with the NIC cards is also our DHCP & DNS server.

Any suggestions of what else to check?

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