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Add a Shutdown Timer to the Desktop

A shutdown timer allows you to delay the shutdown of your computer in the event that you need to leave it on while it completes a particular function, software updates for example, but can't stay around to shut it down manually. The process is fairly straightforward and the timer is unobtrusive.

Adding the Timer

Before you can add a shutdown timer to the desktop, you need to understand how to create one using the Command Prompt tool. The initial set up might seem slightly complicated but is much easier after the first time.

  1. The first thing you need to do to create a shutdown timer manually, is open the Command Prompt. You can do this easily by pressing Windows + X and then selecting "Command Prompf or "Command Prompt (Admin)n from the menu that appears.
  2. In the Command Prompt, type the command shutdown -s -t XXXX. The"XXXX" should be the time in seconds you want to elapse before the computer shuts down. For instance if you want the computer to shut down in one hour, the command should look like shutdown -s -t 3600.
  3. Press Enter to complete the command and set the timer going; you won't see anything on screen just yet, that part comes in a moment. If you input the wrong time or entered the command by mistake, you can cancel the timer by typing shutdown -a in Command Prompt.
  4. You can do this each time you need to use a shutdown timer, which is not really a problem if you only rarely use it, or you can create a shutdown timer shortcut that can be placed on the desktop. The only real problem with a shortcut is that the shutdown time is fixed.
  5. Right-click on the desktop, hover over New and select Shortcut in the side menu. In the path field type shutdown. exe -s -t XXXX (where "XXXX" is the time in seconds) and click Next. Enter a name for the shorzcut, for example "Shutdown 1 Hour", and click Finish.
  6. Place the shortcut out of the way on your desktop. Every time you double-click the shutdown timer shortcut, the timer will start. To cancel the timer, you can create a second shortcut using shutdown. exe -a or enter the shutdown -a command in Corrmand Prompt.

Command Prompt Tricks

Using the Command Prompt to start a shutdown timer is just one of hundreds of ways this admin tool can be used. Let's take a look at a few other ways.

  1. Command Prompt Function Keys If you are finding yourself using the Command Prompt tool a lot, these F Key shortcuts can come in very handy.

    Fl: Pastes the last executed command (character by character)
    F2: Pastes the last executed command (up to the entered character)
    F3: Pastes the last executed command
    F4: Deletes current prompt text up to the entered character
    F5: Pastes recently executed commands (does not cycle)
    F6: Pastes AZ to the prompt
    F7: Displays a selectable list of previously executed commands
    F8: Pastes recently executed commands (cycles)
    F9: Asks for the number of the command from the F7 list to paste

  2. Command Prompt Help The help command (type "help [command] does not provide help for every Command Prompt command. However, any command can be suffixed with the /? option, usually called the help switch, to display detailed information about the command's syntax and even some examples.

  3. Abort a Command Just about any command can be stopped in its tracks with the abort command: Ctrl-C. If you haven't actually executed a command, you can just erase what you^e typed but if youJve already executed it then you can use Ctrl-C to stop it. Remember that even Ctrl-C can't undo things that aren't undoable.