Check the BIOS. Some PCs have a setting to return to the last state after power is resumed.
It's usually desktops that have this setting, not laptops. It's worth a check anyway.
Im just working my way through my first carputer install into a 300zx TT. Thing is i would like the laptop (base of the PC) to hibernate for fast resume, but come out of hibernation automatically when the power comes back on to it.
Il be running xp, setting it to hibernate after a certain time on battery power, but its this auto resume once "main power" is supplied im unsure about.
Yeah, you'll probably have problems finding anything in the BIOS about 'resuming' from last state, I have yet to see a laptop that does that due to the fact that laptops have batteries, and most manufacturers don't put the option in the BIOS.
However since practically every BIOS is different, I can't speak specifically for your laptop, as you haven't told us what it is.
I think the best option would be to hook up a momentary relay to the acc power switch on the ignition and run that to a docking station power switch.
Alternatively some people open up the laptop and wire the power switch to the 2 pins on the modem socket (disconnecting the modem of course) and them using a 2 wire modem cable that can be hooked up to the previously mentioned relay set up
Then you can set the power button to enter standby when it is pressed from within the power settings of windows etc.
As far as laptops go though, unfortunately there's not much option but to do some soldering to get a remote power on solution.
I've also looked into Wake-on-lan options but I havent found anything other than another PC that can send magic packets to wake your car PC so its kind of pointless.
Looks like I'll be going with the Momentary relay solution.
Thank you very much for your message Assault.
USE THE LID SWITCH TO CONTROL YOUR LAPTOP, NOT THE POWER SWITCH.
I think allot of people are just wiring to the power switch which is a momentary switch. I wired mine to the laptop LID (or screen) switch which is not momentary. This way all you need is a regular relay hooked to the ACC in the car. When you turn the key on the laptop thinks you opened the lid. When you shut it off it thinks you closed the lid. This of course assuming your dedicating a laptop to be installed. I do like the idea of using the modem port as a detachable ACC input to control the power.