About Scheduled Jobs


Describes scheduled jobs and explains how to use and manage scheduled jobs in Windows PowerShell and in Task Scheduler.


Windows PowerShell scheduled jobs are a useful hybrid of Windows PowerShell background jobs and Task Scheduler tasks.

Like Windows PowerShell background jobs, scheduled jobs run asynchronously in the background. Instances of scheduled jobs that have run can be managed by using the job cmdlets, such as Start-Job, Get-Job, Stop-Job, and Receive-Job.

Like Task Scheduler tasks, scheduled jobs are saved to disk. You can view and manage the jobs in Task Scheduler, enable and disable them as needed, run them or use them as templates, establish a one-time or recurring schedules for starting the jobs, or set conditions under which the jobs start.

In addition, the results of scheduled job instances are saved to disk in an easily accessible format, providing a running log of job output. Scheduled jobs come with a customized set of cmdlets for managing them. The cmdlets let you create, edit, manage, disable, and re-enable scheduled jobs, job triggers and job options.

This comprehensive and flexible set of tools make scheduled jobs an essential component of many professional Windows PowerShell IT solutions.

The scheduled job cmdlets are included in the PSScheduledJob module that is installed with Windows PowerShell. This module was introduced in Windows PowerShell 3.0 and works in Windows PowerShell 3.0 and later versions of Windows PowerShell.

For more information about Windows PowerShell background jobs, see about_Jobs.

For more information about Task Scheduler, see "Task Scheduler" in the TechNet Library at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=232928.

NOTE: You can view and manage Windows PowerShell scheduled jobs in Task Scheduler, but the Windows PowerShell job and Scheduled Job cmdlets work only on scheduled jobs that are created in Windows PowerShell.


The PSScheduledJob module contains the following cmdlets.

Register-ScheduledJob:       Creates a scheduled job.
Get-ScheduledJob:            Gets a scheduled job.
Set-ScheduledJob:            Changes the properties of a scheduled job
Disable-ScheduledJob:        Temporarily disables a scheduled job.
Enable-ScheduledJob:         Re-enables a scheduled job.
Unregister-ScheduledJob      Deletes a scheduled job and its saved results.

New-JobTrigger:              Creates a job trigger.
Get-JobTrigger:              Gets a job trigger.
Add-JobTrigger:              Adds a job trigger to a scheduled job.
Set-JobTrigger:              Changes a job trigger.
Disable-JobTrigger:          Temporarily disables a job trigger.
Enable-JobTrigger:           Re-enables a job trigger.
Remove-JobTrigger:           Deletes a job trigger.

New-ScheduledJobOption:      Creates a job options object.
Get-ScheduledJobOption:      Gets the job options of a scheduled job.
Set-ScheduledJobOption:      Changes the job options of a scheduled job.


The following commands create a scheduled job that starts every day at 3:00 AM and runs the Get-Process cmdlet. The job starts even if the computer is running on batteries.

$trigger = New-JobTrigger -Daily -At 3AM

$options = New-ScheduledJobOption -StartIfOnBattery

Register-ScheduledJob -Name ProcessJob -ScriptBlock {Get-Process} `
-Trigger $trigger -ScheduledJobOption $options

The following command gets the scheduled jobs on the local computer.

PS C:> Get-ScheduledJob

Id         Name            Triggers        Command            Enabled
--         ----            --------        -------            -------
7          ProcessJob      {1}             Get-Process        True

The following command gets the job triggers of ProcessJob. The input parameters specify the scheduled job, not the trigger, because triggers are saved in a scheduled job.

PS C:> Get-JobTrigger -Name ProcessJob

Id         Frequency       Time                   DaysOfWeek              Enabled
--         ---------       ----                   ----------              -------
1          Daily           11/5/2011 3:00:00 AM                           True

The following command uses the ContinueIfGoingOnBattery parameter of the Set-ScheduledJob cmdlet to change the StopIfGoingOnBatteries property of ProcessJob to False.

PS C:> Get-ScheduledJob -Name ProcessJob | Set-ScheduledJobOption `
-ContinueIfGoingOnBattery -Passthru

StartIfOnBatteries     : True
StopIfGoingOnBatteries : False
WakeToRun              : True
StartIfNotIdle         : True
StopIfGoingOffIdle     : False
RestartOnIdleResume    : False
IdleDuration           : 00:10:00
IdleTimeout            : 01:00:00
ShowInTaskScheduler    : True
RunElevated            : False
RunWithoutNetwork      : True
DoNotAllowDemandStart  : False
MultipleInstancePolicy : IgnoreNew
JobDefinition          : Microsoft.PowerShell.ScheduledJob.ScheduledJobDefinition

The following command gets the ProcessJob scheduled job.

PS C:> Get-ScheduledJob ProcessJob

Id         Name            Triggers        Command        Enabled
--         ----            --------        -------        -------
7          ProcessJob      {1}             Get-Process    True

The following command uses the Get-Job cmdlet to get all instances of the ProcessJob scheduled job that have run thus far. The Get-Job cmdlet gets scheduled jobs only when the PSScheduledJob module is imported into the current session.

TIP: Notice that you use the ScheduledJob cmdlets to manage scheduled jobs, but you use the Job cmdlets to manage instances of scheduled jobs.

PS C:> Get-Job -Name ProcessJob

Id     Name        PSJobTypeName  State    HasMoreData   Location   Command
--     ----        ------------   -----    -----------   --------   -------
45     ProcessJob  PSScheduledJob Completed       True   localhost   Get-Process
46     ProcessJob  PSScheduledJob Completed       True   localhost   Get-Process
47     ProcessJob  PSScheduledJob Completed       True   localhost   Get-Process
48     ProcessJob  PSScheduledJob Completed       True   localhost   Get-Process
49     ProcessJob  PSScheduledJob Completed       True   localhost   Get-Process
50     ProcessJob  PSScheduledJob Completed       True   localhost   Get-Process
51     ProcessJob  PSScheduledJob Completed       True   localhost   Get-Process

The following command gets the results of the most recent instance of the ProcessJob scheduled job (ID = 51).

Receive-Job -ID 51

Even though the Receive-Job command did not include the Keep parameter, the results of the job are saved on disk until you delete them or the maximum number of results are exceeded.

The job results are no longer available in this session, but if you start a new session or open a new Windows PowerShell window, the results of the job are available again.

The following command uses the DefinitionName parameter of the Start-Job cmdlet to start the ProcessJob scheduled job.

Jobs that are started by using the Start-Job cmdlet are standard Windows PowerShell background jobs, not instances of the scheduled job. Like all background jobs, these jobs start immediately -- they are not subject to job options or affected by job triggers -- and their output is not saved in the Output directory of the scheduled job directory.

PS C:> Start-Job -DefinitionName ProcessJob

The following command deletes the ProcessJob scheduled job and all saved results of its job instances.

PS C:> Remove-ScheduledJob ProcessJob


A "scheduled job" runs commands or a script. A scheduled job can include "job triggers" that start the job and "job options" that set conditions for running the job.

A "job trigger" starts a scheduled job automatically. A job trigger can include a one-time or recurring schedule or specify an event, such as when a user logs on or Windows starts. A scheduled job can have one or more job triggers, and you can create, add, enable, disable, and get job triggers.

Job triggers are optional. You can start also scheduled jobs immediately by using the Start-Job cmdlet, or by adding the RunNow parameter to your Register-ScheduledJob command.

"Job options" set the conditions for running a scheduled job. Every scheduled job has one job options object. You can create and edit job options objects and add them to one or more scheduled jobs.

Each time a scheduled job starts, a "job instance" is created. Use the Windows PowerShell Job cmdlets to view and manage the job instance.

Scheduled jobs are saved to disk (hence the cmdlet verb, Register, instead of New) in XML files in the $home\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\PowerShell\ScheduledJobs directory on the local computer.

Windows PowerShell creates a directory for each scheduled job and saves the job commands, job triggers, job options and job results in the scheduled job directory. Job triggers and job options are not saved to disk independently. They are saved in the scheduled job XML of each scheduled job with which they are associated.

Scheduled jobs, job triggers, and job options appear in Windows PowerShell as objects. The objects are interlinked, which makes them easy to discover and use in commands and scripts.

Scheduled jobs appear as ScheduledJobDefinition objects. The ScheduledJobDefinition object has a JobTriggers property that contains the job triggers of the scheduled job and an Options property that contains the job options. The ScheduledJobTriggers and ScheduledJobOptions objects that represent job triggers and job options, respectively, each have a JobDefinition property that contains the scheduled job with which they are associated. This recursive interconnection makes it easy to find the triggers and options of a scheduled job and to find, script, and display the scheduled job to which any job trigger or job option is associated.