How to schedule your PC so it doesn’t interrupt downloads by shutting down

The Control Panel’s Power Options can set your PC to go into sleep mode after a period of inactivity.

However, if you need your PC to stay on for a big download or a thorough virus scan, SmartPower can wait until the operation is complete, then make your PC shut down, go into sleep mode or hibernate.

Automate shutdown after certain tasks

SmartPower (Win 7 / Vista)

1. With the Enable SmartPower box ticked, 1 your PC will try to power down unless one of the rules you’re about to set up stops it. Choose whether it should Hibernate, Suspend or Shutdown from the drop-down menu. 2 ‘Grace time’ 3 delays the shut down by the length of time you set.

2. To keep your PC running at specific times, Go to Schedules 1 and tick the ‘Stay on’ box. 2 Either select ???34 ??an existing schedule and click Edit, or click Add to create a new one. Choose the days 5 and times 6 you want to keep the PC alive. Wake-up 7 only works if your PC supports it.

3. To keep your PC awake for as long as it takes to 4To stop the computer shutting down while it’s doing download something overnight, click the Networks tab. something, like running a virus scan or rendering a 112 ??Tick the box to ‘Stay on when traffic on any network interface is above a threshold’. 2 Tick the box next to the Network Interface that’s connected.

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4. To stop the computer shutting down while it’s doing something, like running a virus scan or rendering a video, click the CPU tab. ? Tick the box. If the CPU use falls below 10 per cent for the ‘Grace time’ you’ve set, it indicates that your PC has finished its job and can shut down.

5. To stop your PC sleeping when you’re watching a video or listening to music, click the ‘Power requests’ tab. Media players tend to request ‘Display power’ and ‘System power’, so tick those boxes.

6. You may still want to shut down the computer if no-one  1 ?is using it, which is what Windows does. Click the Users ??tab ? and tick ‘Stay on when there are active users’. Choose the idle time. 3 Both the mouse and the keyboard must remain undisturbed for the PC to shut down.