One of the main culprits mentioned are home computers, whether they be laptops or desktops. Experts say that shutting these items off when not in use can save a ton on your electric bill. I decided to try this, since I am not made of money :)
I started looking for some type of software that would shut off my computers at a specific time of day, say, middle of the evening when no one is awake. I found several software titles (mostly shareware), but since I am frugal (cheap), I decided to do some investigating of my own to see if my operating system already had such a feature - in a way, it did, and here's how I'm doing it...
First, I did a search for a line command in Windows XP (my OS) that would shutdown my computer automatically (without clicking or typing anything). I found that "shutdown.exe" does exactly this and it has options to go with it, such as displaying a message to the user, to forcing all programs to close no matter what. So now I had a way to shutdown the computer with a single command line - how could I get this to run at a specific time of day? I didn't have to look far...
In Control Panel, there is a lonely applet called Scheduled Tasks. It's usually empty and never used, except for certain programs that utilize it to run certain programs or commands on a certain schedule - just what I was looking for.
To make this post shorter, here's what I did next:
- created a batch file and put the shutdown.exe command in it with the command arguments I wanted.
- placed the batch file in a folder by itself in the root of drive (for simplicity purposes - I knew where it was and what it was)
- created a scheduled task that runs the shutdown batch file at a specific time each day (in the late evening)- I did the same to all my computers so they would all shutdown around the same time.
I'm not sure how much money I am saving by shutting all the equipment down when not is use, but I am sure that it can't hurt.