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PCSTATS TechTip - Automatically Shut Down Windows at a Certain Time - PCSTATS TechTip - Automatically Shut Down Windows at a Certain Time
Mon, Jan 27 2014 | 2:11PM | Filed under: Tips| PermaLink Posted by: STAFF

Boardroom PCs usually get forgotten about after meetings conclude and staff walk away from the room. Since these infrequently accessed PCs tend to have Hibernation disabled, they can remain powered up for days on end doing nothing but consuming electricity.

I decided to tackle the problem with Windows 'Sheduled Tasks' by configuring the computer to automatically close all programs and shut itself down at the end of the business day. Scheduled Tasks is a powerful tool built into Windows 7 that most IT Admins overlook, but is incredibly handy when you need to fun custom batch script or a pre-defined program... we're not even scratching the surfce in this brief TechTip.

Anyway, to automatically shut down a computer at a pre-determined time, go to Start > Control Panel > Administrative Tools > Task Scheduler. In Task Manager choose the 'Action' menu > Create Basic Task > name it "AUTO_Shutdown" and click next > select "Daily" > leave the start date as is and update the time to when you want the computer to shutdown, say "6:00:00PM." Set it to recur every "1" days > choose "start a program" > click "browse" and navigate to "c:\windows\system32\shutdown.exe". In the Add Arguments feild, type: "/s /f" without the outside quotes. Click Next, check the "open the priorities box..." button. > Finish. Check "run whether user is logged in or not", OK > enter your Windows log in credentials and click OK one last time.

If you now click on "Task Scheduler Library" in the left hand pane of the Task Sheduler window you'll now see the 'AUTO_Shutdown' task you've just created, listed.
Double click on this and then right click > Properties if you want need to adjust when the task runs, or right click > Delete. When the task runs, a box will pop up that says "Windows will shut down in less than a minute", then all open programs will be forced close and the PC automatically shut down.

Problem solved, power saved!

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