Use PowerShell to manage Scheduled Tasks in Windows

Martin Brinkmann
Sep 23, 2015
Updated • Sep 24, 2015

I check several locations regularly on Windows systems that I run including the Windows Task Manager to list running processes, the autostart entries, and also the scheduled tasks of the system.

I do that for a couple of reasons including security to make sure nothing slipped by and is running on the system that I consider malicious, spyware or unwanted in other ways, but also to debloat the system by disabling, blocking or removing programs from starting with the system or on schedule.

While it is possible to open the Task Scheduler using search, it does not provide you with a clean interface to go through the list of tasks quickly.

A program that I like to use for the task is Nirsoft's excellent Task Scheduler View which, as usual, is portable and highly efficient.

The PowerShell of Windows offers another quick option on Windows 8 and later. The command Get-ScheduledTask returns all or select scheduled tasks of the local computer.

  1. Open a command prompt window. You can do that with a tap on the Windows-key, typing Powershell.exe, right-clicking on the result, selecting "run as administrator" and hitting enter. Note that the get-scheduledtask command does not require elevation while all management commands do.
  2. Type Get-ScheduledTask

display scheduled tasks

The basic command lists all tasks of the local computer sorted by path. It only includes the task path, task name and state of the task which may be sufficient at times.

The name helps with the identification of the task while the state highlights whether it is enabled or disabled.

What makes this more powerful however are the parameters that you may add to the command to display additional details or filter tasks.

Here are some command examples that you may find useful:

  • Get-ScheduledTask -TaskName Google* returns all tasks that start with Google.
  • Get-ScheduledTask -TaskPath \ returns all tasks that are placed in the TaskPath root.

While it is useful to display scheduled tasks this way, you may also manage tasks using the PowerShell. Please note that you need elevated rights to run disable or enable tasks on a system. This means that you need to run PowerShell from an elevated command prompt.

The commands Disable-ScheduledTask and Enable-Scheduled-Task have been designed for that. As the names suggest, the first disables tasks you select while the second enables them.

If you run the commands directly, you need to specify task names or paths explicitly. There is a workaround for that though that you can use to enable or disable multiple tasks at once.

disable scheduledtasks

Commands that you may find useful are:

  • Disable-ScheduledTask -taskname "Adobe Flash Player Updater" disables the task Adobe Flash Player Updater.
  • Enable-ScheduledTask -taskname "Adobe Flash Player Updater" enables the task Adobe Flash Player Updater.
  • Get-ScheduledTask -taskname Google* | Disable-ScheduledTask disables all tasks the get command returns (starting with Google),

Other task related commands of interest are start-scheduledtask, stop-scheduledtask and unregister-scheduledtask.

Use PowerShell to manage Scheduled Tasks in Windows
Article Name
Use PowerShell to manage Scheduled Tasks in Windows
Find out how to use the PowerShell in Windows to list, disable and enable scheduled tasks.

Tutorials & Tips

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  1. Dan Donx said on January 15, 2023 at 10:29 am

    What mental age of reader are you targeting with the first sentence? 10?

    Why not write an article on how to *avoid* upgrading from W10 to W11. Analogous to those like me who avoided upgrading from 7 to 10 for as long as possible.

    If your paymaster Microsoft permits it, of course.

  2. Dexter said on January 15, 2023 at 11:14 am

    5. Rufus
    6. Ventoy

    PS. I hate reading these “SEO optimized” articles.

    1. cdr said on January 15, 2023 at 3:32 pm

      I used Rufus to create an installer for a 6th gen intel i5 that had MBR. It upgraded using Setup. No issues except for Win 11 always prompting me to replace my local account. Still using Win 10 Pro on all my other PCs to avoid the bullying.

  3. sv said on January 15, 2023 at 6:40 pm

    bit pointless to upgrade for the sake of upgrading as you never know when you’ll get locked out because ms might suddenly not provide updates to unsupported systems.

    ps…. time travelling?
    written. Jan 15, 2023
    Updated • Jan 13, 2023

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on January 16, 2023 at 5:49 am

      This happens when you schedule a post in WordPress and update it before setting the publication date.

  4. Anonymous said on January 16, 2023 at 8:24 am

    Anyone willing to downgrade to this awful OS must like inflicting themselves with harm.

  5. basingstoke said on January 16, 2023 at 11:18 am

    I have become convinced now that anybody who has no qualms with using Windows 11/10 must fit into one of the following brackets:

    1) Too young to remember a time before W10 and W11 (doesn’t know better)

    2) Wants to play the latest games on their PC above anything else (or deeply needs some software which already dropped W7 support)

    3) Doesn’t know too much about how computers work, worried that they’d be absolutely lost and in trouble without the “”latest security””

    4) Microsoft apologist that tries to justify that the latest “features” and “changes” are actually a good thing, that improve Windows

    5) Uses their computer to do a bare minimum of like 3 different things, browse web, check emails, etc, so really doesn’t fuss

    Obviously that doesn’t cover everyone, there’s also the category that:

    6) Actually liked W7 more than 10, and held out as long as possible before switching, begrudgingly uses 10 now

    Have I missed any group off this list?

    1. Heinz Strunk said on September 19, 2023 at 3:57 pm

      You have missed in this group just about any professional user that uses business software like CAD programs or ERP Programs which are 99% of all professional users from this list.

      Linux doesn’t help anyone who is not a linux kid and apple is just a fancy facebook machine.

  6. ilev said on August 24, 2023 at 7:34 pm

    Microsoft has removed KB5029351 update

    1. EP said on August 24, 2023 at 9:21 pm

      only from windows update though
      KB5029351 is still available from the ms update catalog site

  7. Anonymous said on August 24, 2023 at 11:05 pm

    1. This update is labaled as PREVIEW if it causes issues to unintelligent people, then they shouldn’t have allowed Preview updates ot install.

    2. I have installed it in a 11 years old computer, and no problems at all.

    3. Making a big drama over a bluescreen for an updated labeled as preview is ridiculous.

    This is probably another BS internet drama where people ran programs and scripts that modified the registry until they broke Windows, just for removing stuff that they weren’t even using just for the sake of it.
    Maybe people should stop playing geeks and actually either use Windows 10 or Windows 11, but don’t try to modify things just for the sake of it.

    Sometimes removing or stopping things (like defender is a perfect example) only need intelligence, not scripts or 3rd party programs that might mess with windows.

  8. john said on August 24, 2023 at 11:17 pm

    Windows 11 was a pointless release, it was just created because some of the Windows team wanted to boost sales with some sort of new and improved Windows 10. Instead, Microsoft cannot support one version well let alone two.

    1. John G. said on August 25, 2023 at 12:08 pm

      Windows 11 is the worst ugly shame by Microsoft ever. They should release with every new W11 version a complete free version of Starallback inside just to make this sh** OS functionally again.

  9. EP said on August 25, 2023 at 3:10 pm

    motherboard maker MSI has recently released a statement regarding the “unsupported processor” blue screen error for their boards using Intel 600/700 series chipsets & to avoid the KB5029351 Win11 update:–UNSUPPORTED-PROCESSOR–Error-Message-of-Windows-11-Update-KB5029351-Preview-142215

  10. EP said on August 29, 2023 at 7:32 pm

    check out the following recent articles:

    Neowin – Microsoft puts little blame on its Windows update after UNSUPPORTED PROCESSOR BSOD bug:

    BleepingComputer – Microsoft blames ‘unsupported processor’ blue screens on OEM vendors:

  11. Leonard Britvolli said on August 30, 2023 at 10:33 pm

    While there may be changes or updates to the Windows 10 Store for Business and Education in the future, it is premature to conclude that it will be discontinued based solely on rumors.

  12. sembrador said on September 5, 2023 at 9:32 pm

    My advice, I left win 15 years ago. Now I’m a happy linux user (linuxmint) but there is Centos, Fedora, Ubuntu depending on your needs.

  13. EP said on September 6, 2023 at 11:55 am

    motherboard maker MSI has recently released new BIOS/firmware updates for their Intel 600 & 700 series motherboards to fix the “UNSUPPORTED_PROCESSOR” problem (Sept. 6):–UNSUPPORTED-PROCESSOR–caused-BSOD-on-MSI-s-Intel-700-and-600-Series-Motherboards-142277

  14. Raphael Benzo said on September 24, 2023 at 9:52 pm

    I try to disable the Diagnostics Tracking Service (Connected Devices Platform User Services) but it wont let me disable it, any help will be greatly appreciated.
    Tank you for your help

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