Adding a Scheduled Task

This page describes how to add a scheduled task to Windows.  It shows Windows XP (slightly edited), but the principles apply to all versions of Windows.  As an example, we want to add a task to update some statistics every 30 minutes, and we want the task to run at 5 minutes and 35 minutes past the hour.  It is assumed that you have already written and tested a command (batch) file which contains all the commands you need to run to perform the required task, and that this file is named UpdateMrtgStats.cmd.

Using this information as a guide, you can also add scheduled tasks to Windows Vista and Windows-7.  Rather than re-invent the wheel, I point to some external references:

or with screen-shots:


Start the Windows Control Panel

Start button, Control Panel.  Select Scheduled Tasks.  You should get a list of the existing tasks (e.g. AppleSoftwareUpdate in the screenshot below) and an Add Scheduled Task option.  Double-click on Add Scheduled Task.


This should invoke the Scheduled Task Wizard...

Click Next.

The wizard will prompt you which program you want to run.  However, as you want to run your own command script, click Browse to allow you to locate your command file.

Select your command file and click Open.

You now need to tell the computer when to run this task.  In this case, you want the task to run every day, and at 30-minute intervals during the day.  At this point, we can define the "daily" part of the schedule, and the 30-minute part will come later.  Select Daily and click Next.

We now need to define the start time for the task.  Change the Start time field to 00:05.  This will run the task at five minutes past midnight.  There are other options such as only running on weekdays etc. but we don't need those.  Click Next.

We are now required to give the user name an password to run the task.  Once this is done, click Next.

That completes creating the task, although we still need to set the 30-minute repeat.  To do this right away, make sure that the "Open advanced..." box is checked.  If you forget to do this, you can always right-click the task and select Properties to edit these details later.  Click Finish.

You now see the schedule you have already created - daily at 00:05.  Click Advanced.

Now you can click on the Repeat task box, which enables the settings in the box.  The Every setting should be changed to 30 minutes (or whatever interval you want).  As you want the task to repeat throughout the whole 24 hours, in the Duration field, select 24 hours.  Click OK.

You are now back with the main Properties, Schedule dialog and you can now see that the task is shown as repeating every 30 minutes.

And that's it!


Copyright © David Taylor, Edinburgh   Last modified: 2013 Aug 16 at 07:52