Computers should make our lives easier. So why are you spending so much time optimizing your PC? Many people are happy to spend hours tinkering with their PCs even for the smallest performance upgrade. Others want everything about their computers to be automatic.
Today, we’re going to show you how to automate plenty of different tasks in Windows 7 and Windows 8 using just a few simple steps.
How to use Windows Task Scheduler
In order to perform all of these automated tasks, we need to use Windows Task Scheduler. As the name suggests, this program automatically runs tasks based on a schedule that users set up.
Step 1) Open Task Scheduler by typing ‘Task Scheduler’ in the Windows start menu search bar
Step 2) Right-click on the ‘Task Scheduler’ library and click on ‘New Folder’ in order to make a folder that contains all of your custom commands and tasks.
Step 3) Create a task using Action > Create Task. Name your task, then choose your security options. In most cases, leaving it on the default security settings is perfectly fine.
Step 4) Choose when the task will run by going to the Triggers tab and clicking on the ‘New’ button. There are a number of different triggers available. You can choose to run a task at a certain time of day, for example. Or, you can choose to run a task when your computer starts up, becomes idle, or locks.
Step 5) Define your task. Once you’ve chosen the triggers you want, it’s time to go to the Actions tab and click the ‘New’ button once more. You most likely want to start a program or application, so choose the Start a program option from the dropdown menu. Then, browse to find the location of the program’s .exe file.
Step 6) If you want more than one program to launch when a trigger occurs, then you can add multiple actions to this section. Add as many actions as you want and then click OK once you’re finished.
Step 7) If you want to do more complicated things with the Windows Task Scheduler, read this fantastic write-up at TechRadar.com, which describes exactly how to run a disk defragmenter when the system becomes idle. You can also tell your computer to only run tasks if certain conditions are met and perform more complex types of task behavior.
What should you automate? Here are some ideas
Now the next important question to answer is: what exactly should you automate? In Windows Vista, Windows 7, and Windows 8, the disk defragmenter is automated by default, so automating that task might not be that useful.
However, there are plenty of other programs you can automate. Here are some ideas that will help you streamline your life and optimize your computer’s performance – all with a minimal amount of involvement from you:
-Run a BitTorrent client whenever your computer becomes idle. That way, your internet speed won’t plummet while your computer is in use, and whatever you’re downloading will finish as soon as possible.
-Run PC Cleaner Pro once a week
-Tell Task Scheduler to open your favorite programs as soon as your computer starts up. For example, you can instruct it to open your internet browser, Microsoft Office, and a music player.
-Tell your computer to play a celebratory song every Friday at 5pm to signify the end of the work week (be careful about doing this if you work in an office).
-Open a to-do list when you come back from lunch to ensure that you’re working hard for the entire day and get everything done
No matter what you do, the Windows Task Scheduler will simplify your life. Setting up tasks takes only a few minutes, and you can play around with it to have all sorts of fun. You could even start playing pranks on your coworkers and tell Task Scheduler to play an embarrassing song every day at a certain time.