Scheduling Windows Maintenance Tasks

Don’t feel like manually maintaining your system? Use the Task Scheduler to perform maintenance tasks automatically.

Step 1: Click Start, and then click Control Panel. Double click the Scheduled Tasks applet to open it, as shown above. Double-click the Add Scheduled Task icon to open the Scheduled Task Wizard.

Step 2: At the introductory Scheduled Task Wizard screen, click Next. Scroll through the list of available programs, and then select a maintenance-related program to run, such as Disk Cleanup. Click Next.

Step 3: Type an appropriate name for the task, and then select an interval at which the task should be performed, such as daily, weekly, monthly, and so forth. In this example select Monthly, and then click Next.

Step 4: Select an appropriate start time for the task, as well as the date or day of the month on which the task should start. Select the month(s) in which this task should run, and then click Next.

Step 5: Provide a username and password as the credentials under which the task will run. This is useful in cases where you want a scheduled maintenance task to run under the administrator account rather than the user currently logged on. Click Next.

Step 6: Click Finish to complete the wizard. If you want to configure the advanced properties of the task, check the checkbox on this screen prior to clicking Finish. This task can later be changed or deleted from the main Scheduled Tasks window.

Author: Dan DiNicolo

Dan DiNicolo is a freelance author, consultant, trainer, and the managing editor of He is the author of the CCNA Study Guide found on this site, as well as many books including the PC Magazine titles Windows XP Security Solutions and Windows Vista Security Solutions. Click here to contact Dan.