Windows operating system has lot of hidden commands which you can use to improve your productivity. Shutdown is one such command you can use for scheduling shutdown and restart activities in Windows. In addition, you can also use the in-built Task Scheduler app for this purpose. In one of the previous articles, we have explained how to schedule shutdown and, in this article, let us explore various methods to schedule restart in Windows 11.
Scheduling Restart in Windows PC
By default, you can restart the system in multiple ways and the easiest option is by clicking on the Start > power icon and then selecting “Restart” option from the menu.
However, this will instantly trigger the restart action and sometimes you may want to restart certain point of time later. Perhaps you have changed some policy settings or installed an app and want to restart the system after 30 minutes of buys working. Similarly, you want to schedule the restart after running Windows Update for the changes to take effect. Whatsoever is the reason, make sure to save all your work and use one of the following four methods to schedule restart in Windows 11.
Method 1 – Using Desktop Shortcut
This is an easy and recommended option as you can pin the shortcut to taskbar and quickly trigger the restart action. However, it works with the predefined delay set in the shortcut command and you may need to edit the time delay if you want different timer.
- Right-click on an empty space on your desktop, and select “New > Shortcut” option.
- Let’s say, you want to delay the restart after 5 minutes which is 300 seconds. Remember to enter the time in seconds in the command. So, type shutdown /r /f /t 300 in “Type the location of the item:” box for restarting the system after 5 minutes and click “Next” button.
- On the next screen, type a name for your shortcut something like “Schedule Restart” and click “Finish” button.
- You will see the “Schedule Restart” shortcut on the desktop and right-click on it.
- Select “Pin to Start” to add the shortcut in your Start menu. Otherwise, click “Show more options” to expand the context menu items.
- Select “Pin to taskbar” option to add the shortcut icon in the taskbar.
- It will look like below in your taskbar and Start menu. You can anytime click on the shortcut to restart the system after 5 minutes.
- Simply click on the Start/taskbar shortcut or double-click on the desktop shortcut and Windows will show a prompt that you will be logged out in 5 minutes. You will see another reminder prompt before 2 minutes. As you can see, this is an informational prompt and you will not have any option to cancel the action.
Note: The /f parameter in the command will force close all open applications without any warning prompt before restarting. This is automatically applied in shutdown command when using /t timer. Hence, instead of shutdown /r /f /t 300, you can also use shutdown /r /t 300 to do the same action.
If you want to change the time. Right-click on the desktop shortcut and select “Properties” option. Go to “Shortcuts” tad and change 300 seconds to any preferred value in “Target” box. The command will accept the time in range between 0 to 315360000 seconds (which is 10 years).
Method 2 – Use Windows Terminal
Terminal app is the default command line interface in Windows 11. You can toggle Command Prompt or Windows PowerShell apps within Terminal to trigger delayed restart action.
- Right-click on Start icon in taskbar and select “Terminal (Admin)” option.
- Click the down arrow icon in the title bar and select either “Command Prompt” or “Windows PowerShell” option.
- Let’s choose “Command Prompt” app and type shutdown /r /f /t 300 in the prompt.
- Press enter and the system will show the same prompt like above mentioning you will be logged out after 5 minutes.
- Close the prompt and the system will automatically restart after 5 minutes.
You can use the same command in Windows PowerShell app if you prefer to use that app.
Method 3 – Restart Using Run Prompt
The next option to schedule restart in Windows 11 is to use the Run prompt with the same command.
- Right-click on Start icon and select “Run” menu.
- Type shutdown /r /f /t 300 in the text box and press “OK” button.
- You will immediately see a logout prompt and then another one before 2 minutes of automatically restarting the system.
Method 4 – Use Task Scheduler to Schedule Restart
Task Scheduler app comes as part of Windows OS and helps to schedule tasks to run automatically. Though this is a lengthier process compared to other methods, you can schedule restart repeatedly like daily, weekly or monthly on a specific time.
- Search and open Task Scheduler app from Start or Search box in taskbar.
- When the app opens, go to “Action” menu and select “Create Task…” option.
- Type the name and description as “Schedule Restart” under “General” tab. Click “Configure for” dropdown, select “Windows 10” option.
- Go to “Triggers” tab and click “New” button. On the pop-up, select “On a schedule” option from “Begin the task” dropdown. After that, select the frequency to schedule restart action. For example, select “Daily” option and then start date, time and enter the frequency for recurring the action.
- Go to “Action” tab, click “New” button and select “Start a program” option from “Action” dropdown. Click “Browse” button against “Program/script” box and system will automatically take you C:\Windows\System32 folder. Search and select shutdown.exe file. Type the arguments as /r /f /t 300.
- Finally, go to “Conditions” tab and provide any preconditions you want to define before automatically triggering the restart. It is good idea to select “Start the task only if the computer is idle” option and set a timer.
- Click “OK” button to add your task.
Now that you have created a scheduled task for restart action with 300 seconds on daily recurrence. The task will be triggered based on the time and conditions you have set. If you want to test or trigger the task immediately, go to “Task Scheduler Library” section from the left sidebar of Task Scheduler app. Right-click on it and select “Refresh” option and you will see the “Schedule Restart” task appears in the list. Again, right-click on that task and select “Run” option to trigger the scheduled restart.
You will see a prompt mentioning you will be logged out in 5 minutes similar to other methods and system will restart after 5 minutes.
Using desktop shortcut is the easiest option for scheduling restart in Windows 11. However, make sure accidentally not clicking on the pinned shortcut from taskbar. You can use Terminal or Run options for instant one-time delaying of restart action. Finally, follow Task Scheduler method option for scheduling restart with recurring frequency and conditions.