Automatic Shutdown

Martin Brinkmann
Sep 5, 2008
Updated • May 22, 2017

Smart Shutdown is a free program for Microsoft Windows devices supports several options to shut down local or network PCs running Windows.

If you like to use your PC or laptop to play music or a movie while you fall asleep, you may appreciate a software program that is mart enough to shut down the computer once you are asleep.

While some of you may not mind the PC running all night long, or until its battery dies, others may prefer an efficient solution instead. Smart Shutdown is a software program that provides such a solution.

Smart Shutdown

Smart Shutdown does not look like much after installation, and users judging its tiny interface might be disappointed at first glance. This disappointment will surely change to sheer joy after finding out that it offers functionality that would put many applications to shame.

The basic functionality is to perform a power action after a certain time of inactivity on the user's part. The default setting is to turn off the computer after 30 minutes of inactivity. The interval and the action can be changed in the same menu.

Alternatives are to log off the logged in user, to disconnect the Internet connection, or display a message instead that acts as a reminder.

But there is more to the program than that. You may configure the program to run a specific action at a specific time, or after some time has passed. Both are executed regardless of the activity level of the computer system, and make the program more versatile because of that, and because of the ability to shut down network computers.

You can configure the network computers that you want to shut down using the program in the preferences. You can set up a message that is displayed on the network computer prior to the shut down. The two options that Smart Shutdown supports are to shut down network computers, or to restart them.

You can save the list of network devices, so that you can load them again at a later point in time to speed up the process.

And then there are the global options. You can enable fast system shutdown, enable the emptying of the recycle bin prior to the shut down, enable the forceful termination of open tasks and processes, configure preferences for individual users, and configure left and right-click shortcuts that run certain actions when executed.

Smart Shutdown can be configured to be run from the command line which makes it possible to create shortcuts for automatic shut downs of Windows.

Closing Words

Smart Shutdown is a handy program for Windows users who want more control over the shutdown process. Most of the options are also available through the shutdown command of the operating system, but some are not.

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  1. Triston Taylor said on November 3, 2008 at 1:08 pm

    Ok, I made an excellent system shutdown utility with a filesize less than 30KB with command line or interface input.

    Once installed, you can run the utility from the windows run dialog like this:

    pss 2 days 3 hours 27 minutes


    pss 2d 3h 27m


    pss 2:3:27:0 <- = Days:Hours:Minutes:Seconds

    In the above example, Days, and or Hours, and or Minutes can be omitted.

    PSS is an Acronym for Planned System Shutdown

    Automatic time calculations for inputs E.G. 120 seconds = 2 Minutes

    Check it out! Its Free! And looks awesome!

  2. cyneuron said on September 7, 2008 at 7:11 pm

    timed shutdown has always been awesome for this….free and simple…

    but one thing i always has been looking for…any such software which may shutdown pc when winamp stops playing or after certain time of playback (i have tried some winamp plugin for this but they are really badly integrated with winamp, difficult to use, and one major problem with them is that they don’t close winamp before sending shutdown command, so in effect it results in Killing winamp leading on to loss of all playback counts (which i heavily rely to play my favorites)

    any suggestions here….?

  3. Martin said on September 6, 2008 at 1:14 pm

    jun yes it can

  4. jun said on September 6, 2008 at 1:00 pm

    can it also hibernate?

  5. Bruno said on September 5, 2008 at 11:03 pm

    thx, useful to launch some jobs the night or when I need to leave and a big download is not finished

  6. Brian said on September 5, 2008 at 10:50 pm

    There are several free apps to accomplish this type of shutdown.
    Manage PC Shutdown ( allows you to do it on a timer or action or even an event.

    The simplest (and smallest) one I’ve found is Chrono Shutdown, but it only allows a timed shutdown.

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