Sometimes it’s useful to leave a PC running while your not at it. It is sometimes also equally useful to be able to turn it off while not at it. Luckily their are several ways of doing this.
Lifehacker recently reviewed a program called Switch Off. Its a small application that allows you to shut down (or restart, log off, lock, start VPN connections, run custom scripts) your computer based on a variety of factors. Such as on a schedule, on CPU load, or even remotely though a web interface. Which is designed for mobile devices. If you setup the correct port forwarding you can shut down your computer from anywhere in the world. For more information check out the lifehacker page
For a simple or quick one off solution you can do a time based shutdown using a built in command on any Windows XP, vista, 7, Server 2003, Server 2008 with the shutdown command.
Just open a Run window (Start – Run or Windows Key + R) Type in:
shutdown -s -t [number of seconds] -f
(The -s is for shutdown, to restart use -r. The -f is to force all programs to shut down, works 99.9% of the time)
So to turn off your PC in 30 minutes you would use the following command:
shutdown -s -t 1800 -f
Some common Seconds to Minutes conversions are:
15 minutes – 900 seconds
30 minutes – 1800 seconds
45 minutes – 2700 seconds
60 minutes – 3600 seconds
120 minutes – 5400 seconds.
This shutdown command also works if you want to shutdown a computer after using Remote Desktop Connection (RDC). When you go to shutdown after using RDC you’ll notice disconnect rather than shutdown. By using this you can shutdown the remote server (or restart) without having to go the the physical machine.