Previously, while discussing about 5 tips to lower your broadband usage, we have emphasized on the fact that, we should keep the majority of our download during the unmetered time only. While, this is the easiest method to avoid excessive usage, can also be hectic because of the timing of the Happy Hours. For example, in India, BSNL Broadband provides 2.5 GB of daytime along with night unlimited [0200 – 0800] usage on a standard 2mbps connection. So turning the download on in the middle of the night, is really impossible for regular service employees and students.
So, we are going to discuss about a software, specifically, a scheduler software, which can not only Dial up your Internet Connection [whatever it is, broadband, dial-up whatever], but also can automate the whole downloading process and can shut down your computer, when the happy hours end. The software is named as Z-Cron and it is the best freeware of its kind.
A scheduling service (a.k.a. task planner) is an important constituent of a system for the regular execution of recurring tasks. Z-Cron is a scheduler which you can use to run jobs/tasks on your PC time automatically with a schedule. Z-Cron is a control center for the scheduling or automation of software.
Read below to download and do the proper setups…
1: Download and install Z-Cron Scheduler:
It is a freeware and can be downloaded from the following links:
- Home Page: Click here;
- Download Page: Click here;
Note that this software is a freeware, only for private use. For commercial use, you need to buy it from the developer. Read the documentation to know more about this.
After downloading, simply install it like a general software. For more information, read their guide from the homepage.
2: Schedule the Broadband/Dial Up connection:
Assuming your unmetered timing to be from 2 AM to 8 AM, do the following setups:
Automatically Stand By the computer and wake it up before the happy hours:
- Open up Z-Cron Scheduler from start menu > All Program > Z-Cron;
- Now Click on the “Task” tab on the left panel. A new window will pop up. It is something like this… Click to enlarge
- Now select a unique job [by the job number] and hit the “Tools” buttons. This will popup the preset automations of Z-Cron. Scroll down until you see “Stand By”. Select it and hit “OK”. Click to enlarge
- Now on the “Wake Up in” area, select 2 hrs and 0 mins. Also tick the “Activate Task” and “Once per day” check boxes. Click to enlarge
- Now navigate to the “Scheduler” tab, hit the Scheduler button and tick the “00 X 00” box. Click to enlarge
This will make the stand by process to start from 12 mid-night. You can set it to any
time you like.
- Now Hit the Save Button. Make sure that every day is checked and the task is Activated. You are all done…
Dial the Internet Connection after Stand by-
- Now create another job as mentioned above and hit the tools menu. This time select “RAS DIAL” and set the “Connection” to the dial up you want to use.
- Also, set the scheduler accordingly. I have set the dial up at 2:05 AM to avoid any charged usage. You need to set the time according to your ISP.
- Save this process and you are done. Your computer is now online and any downloading software like utorrent, IDM etc will continue to download during this time
Auto launching the Downloading Program:
This is the easiest step…
- Create a job as before and instead of tools hit the “…” or browse button.
- Now browse and select the program you want to launch.
- Also schedule it accordingly and save.
Shutting down the computer after the happy hours:
To automatically shut down your PC after unmetered timing, follow these easy steps:
- Create another job and on the Tools menu select “SHUTDOWN”. Click to enlarge
- Now schedule it as before and save… Now that was easy I guess!
That was the complete process of automating the download. But wait, there is more…
3: Other Features…
As quoted from the official site, Z-Cron can be used for…
- Starting and stopping of applications (also with parameters).
- Calling or saving of Websites.
- Loading documents.
- Starting, stopping and monitoring system services (professional version).
- Copying files and directories.
- Deleting files and directories
- Cleanup of directories.
- Archiving and compressing files and directories.
- Switching computers in a network on or off.
- Automated switching of electrical devices, e.g. with Z-USBswitch.
- Establishing and disconnecting internet/vpn connections (Modem/ISDN)
Now this is a loong list of features isn’t it? Keep exploring and experimenting to get to know more about them…
I guess, this guide was able to solve your headaches on automatic downloading and related scheduling… Please give your feedback on this software. Also, if you have came across any other software powerful than this, do share with us…
Gr8 post! also read ur 5 tips to lower broadband usage. Though, i have been using these tips b4 i read it here. also i was using windows task scheduler to schedule my downloads from 2am to 8am. Earlier i had my broadband username password saved in the modem itself. so i used to keep my modem on but my PC in stand-by mode. So when PC starts at 2am modem will automatically log in and my downloads wud start. Due to some reasons that i can't figure out, this modem setting is no longer working, so i had to switch back to dial-up connecting to broadband. but now no matter what i do the shortcut of dial-up connection won't start through task scheduler. i hope this Z-Cron helps me out. Will test and post comment again.
Thanks for your feedback! I am using the z-cron scheduler myself since I took the BSNL Broadband 500C+ plan and it works great… It is true that task scheduler is not capable of running Dial ups! For the modem, I think you need to login to the modem config page [generally, http://192.168.1.1/%5D and make a PPOE with the given username and password from your ISP!
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wake up option is not working in windows 7
same problem here. Didn’t find any solution.
This in ref. to Z Cron 4.7 Build 06, Free version.
I am using window 7 Ultimate, for last few days I am facing a problem that when I schedule a task of Sleep mode , my system goes sleep at schedule time but it not wake up on schedule time.
I’ve check my power option all the setting is enable – that no password on wake up & allow wake timer is activated but despite of all , my system is not wake up at schedule time.
Kindly help me to get rid of this.
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