Window 7’s Task Scheduler feature let you set various tasks, which otherwise would require you to manually do.The Task scheduler MMC snap-in is designed for you to schedule automated tasks that will trigger the computer to take actions that you have specified based on time and / or events that occur on your computer or in a network. Here I will detail on how to use the Task Scheduler to set your computer to shutdown automatically.

Trigger and Action

Task Scheduler designed for Windows 7 users to run, delete, disable or modify user specified tasks. Task Scheduler User Interface is an MMC snap-in that is enhanced especially for Windows 7 and replaces the Scheduled Tasks Explorer in the previous versions of Windows, like Windows XP, Windows server, Windows 2003 and Windows 2000. The Task Scheduler in Windows 7 maintains a list in its library, with user friendly menu for easily setting up a task that you want you computer to take any given time or during a planned event.  Task Scheduler works on two main concepts: Triggers and Actions.

A trigger is the specified task pre input by the user and the action that it is required to take when that particular event is triggered. The various actions can be auto shutting down your PC during a specified time (which is the trigger); sending an email automatically or showing a message box. The last two examples are mostly useful when you are in a network.

Open Task Scheduler

There are two ways to open a Task Scheduler: using the Command Prompt and from the Control Panel. To open it from command prompt, type Taskschd.msc in the command prompt. To open from Control Panel, select System and Maintenance and select Administrative Tools. Task Scheduler is part of the administrative tools.

Auto Shutdown

Once you have opened the Task Scheduler wizard, you can set up a time for your computer to automatically shutdown. Begin by clicking on the Action Menu and choose “Create Basic Task…”.  This will open the wizard window; name the task, for example: Auto Shutdown, and click Next. On the next screen, which is Task Trigger, select how often, you want this take to be performed, in this case automatic shutdown; you can choose daily and click Next. In the next screen choose the date and time you want the task to be performed and click Next.  In the Actions window click the first option Start a program, click Next. In the next screen in the Program/script filed type or copy and paste this C:\Windows\System32\shutdown.exe; and in the Add arguments text filed type /s, click Next. The next screen lets you review and ensure it is the time you want your computer to shut down and click Finish.

You have now set your computer to shutdown at your specified time. The Task Scheduler can be used to specify any action you want the computer to take and is not limited to shutdown process alone.