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Thread: Task Scheduler

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    Task Scheduler

    Hey guys,

    in ur recent newsletter on "Don't pay for software u don't need - part1" u mention a lot of things that run on task scheduler, for example disk defraging. however, in said example, the default setting is, as u noted, 1:00am. so this only takes place if ur computer is on at 1:00am, eh? (as well as any other tasks that are scheduled). just a subtle point not made in the article.

    thanks
    mike C

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    Super Moderator BATcher's Avatar
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    If you had looked subtler further into the Defrag Scheduled Task's Settings you would have found a tick in the box in front of "Run task as soon as possible after a scheduled start is missed". And in Conditions that the task starts if the computer is idle for 3 minutes (value can be changed).
    BATcher

    Time prevents everything happening all at once...

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    ahhh... thank u. i missed that. and most likely wouldn't have concerned myself w/ that since i really don't like things running 'automatically' anyway. but appreciate ur answer and thanks again! btw, this article was great since it now lead me to find so many more things that run automatically. now i can have more fun depopulating windows programs. awesome article!

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    Task Scheduler - hidden scheduled tasks

    I performed a zero-up install of Win7 and found Task Scheduler to itself be somewhat hidden (buried 2 or 3 levels down in the Control Panel). You can also find it in Start > Programs > Accessories > System Tools or Start > Programs > Administrative Tools.

    Most of the scheduled tasks are hidden, and many of them are Microsoft spawned for collecting data on your PC. Almost everything else that installs code on your machine probably has one or more such hidden tasks.

    Why do they have to be hidden? Are they afraid of something?

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    Quote Originally Posted by kashken View Post
    I performed a zero-up install of Win7 and found Task Scheduler to itself be somewhat hidden (buried 2 or 3 levels down in the Control Panel). You can also find it in Start > Programs > Accessories > System Tools or Start > Programs > Administrative Tools.

    Most of the scheduled tasks are hidden, and many of them are Microsoft spawned for collecting data on your PC. Almost everything else that installs code on your machine probably has one or more such hidden tasks.

    Why do they have to be hidden? Are they afraid of something?
    For quicker access click on the start orb, type computer in the search bar, click on computer management. Tasks aren't hidden. Many every day users don't care about them. As with many things to do with Windows as Microsoft gathers and analyzes usage data on various features the method used to access a feature may be changed.

    Joe

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    Is Task Scheduler hidden?

    When they removed Scheduled Tasks from the up front position as a unique control panel applet, it became hidden. That meant you had to go other places to find it, sometimes 2 or 3 steps.

    When you get into Computer Management and open the list of MicroSoft entries, there are more than 45 under Windows (major headings), NOT including Antimalware, Defender, Live, and WPD.

    There are so many, it is hard to tell what to do with them. Each scheduled task has a description of what they do, including the identity and/or authentification they run under (Users, Authenticated Users, SYSTEM, LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE, and INTERACTIVE). A couple I deleted had strange multi-digit userids with dashes in them, although I think these may have come from a transfer of data from my old XP system.

    There are 24 individual scheduled tasks under Media Center alone.

    Hidden, somewhat. Obfuscated, most certainly. Necessary, hardly. Just tons of code that take lots of memory and processing (at some point). Certainly a decent attack point for malware. I found almost none of these ran under my userid, so what controls this activity? Many of the Actions are labeled "Custom Handler" so there is no indication of what they do.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kashken View Post
    When they removed Scheduled Tasks from the up front position as a unique control panel applet, it became hidden. That meant you had to go other places to find it, sometimes 2 or 3 steps.

    When you get into Computer Management and open the list of MicroSoft entries, there are more than 45 under Windows (major headings), NOT including Antimalware, Defender, Live, and WPD.

    There are so many, it is hard to tell what to do with them. Each scheduled task has a description of what they do, including the identity and/or authentification they run under (Users, Authenticated Users, SYSTEM, LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE, and INTERACTIVE). A couple I deleted had strange multi-digit userids with dashes in them, although I think these may have come from a transfer of data from my old XP system.

    There are 24 individual scheduled tasks under Media Center alone.

    Hidden, somewhat. Obfuscated, most certainly. Necessary, hardly. Just tons of code that take lots of memory and processing (at some point). Certainly a decent attack point for malware. I found almost none of these ran under my userid, so what controls this activity? Many of the Actions are labeled "Custom Handler" so there is no indication of what they do.
    IMO, you should leave those tasks alone. There has always been lots of activity going on to collect statistics, report usage when you opt in to any of the Customer Experience initiatives, monitor aspects of the system. Now, those jobs are collected and administered in one place. You can choose any adjective you care to use it won't change where they are located. The vast majority of these tasks are used to manage your computer. The tasks themselves are hardly tons of code. Unless you know what the program is & what it is doing, you really don't have a good idea of how much memory or processing is used. If a program starts, run quickly, and terminates you won't even know it has run. As far as "what controls this activity" I'm unclear what you mean. The tasks are created during the installation of the operating system and various software programs. The installer program itself is instructed to create tasks and to have them run using whatever credentials you see.

    BTW, if you want the Task Scheduler easier to access pin "Computer Management" to the taskbar. Then it is two clicks away.
    OR create a shortcut with the target %SYSTEMROOT%\System32\taskschd.msc.

    Joe
    Last edited by JoeP517; 2011-05-06 at 21:07.

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    I was not aware of this feature. Its good to know so I can start tweaking it.

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