You use the Task Scheduler to view and work with scheduled tasks. To access the Task Scheduler, click Starts-Control Panels-System and SecuritysAdministrative ToolssSchedule Tasks.
As Figure 20-24 shows, scheduled tasks are stored in the Task Scheduler Library. Task Scheduler displays tasks created by you or other users when you select the Task Scheduler Library node in the left pane. Unlike earlier versions of Windows, Windows 7 makes extensive use of scheduled tasks. In the Task Scheduler Library, you'll find system tasks under Microsoft\Windows and Microsoft\Windows Defender. Tasks under Microsoft\Windows handle many of the background housekeeping tasks on your computer. Tasks under Microsoft\Windows Defender are used to automate malware scans.
To ensure that you don't accidentally delete or modify system tasks, most system tasks are locked so that you cannot edit them. Some system tasks are also hidden. In Task Scheduler, you can view hidden tasks by selecting Show Hidden Tasks on the View menu.
Tasks can have many properties associated with them, including:
• Triggers that specify the circumstances under which a task begins and ends
• Actions that define the action a task performs when it is started
• Conditions that qualify the conditions under which a task is started or stopped
• Settings that affect the behavior of the task
Based on these properties, you can use Task Manager to create two types of tasks: basic tasks and advanced tasks. Basic tasks have only triggers and actions, and are meant to help you quickly schedule a common task. Advanced tasks have triggers, actions, conditions, and settings, and are meant to be used by advanced users or administrators.
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