Windows Server - Auto Shutdown and Restart

Asked By John on 20-Mar-08 05:14 PM
Planning to schedule my Windows Server 2003 to auto shutdown and restart
(just one time) during non business hour. I'm going to use Task Scheduler to
accomplish this. I've never done it before so I have a question: what is the

C:\Windows\System32\Shutdown.exe -r

is that sufficient? Do I need to provide reason for restart? Credentials to
run the command?


lforbe replied on 20-Mar-08 09:39 PM

For 2003 server you need a reason. It won't work with just the -r.  If you
type the shutdown /? at the command line it will give you all the options.

shutdown -r -d p:0:0 shoud work. Test at the command line of a workstation.

Paul Bergson [MVP-DS] replied on 21-Mar-08 08:38 AM
I would suggest you reconsider using the shutdown command.  I have had a lot
machines go stupid where they hang in the reboot process and you will
eventually have to hit the power switch to get them restarted.  It is
intermittent and it works most of the time but I have since written a script
with an e-mail notification when it is rebooted.

I create a vbs from the script below (Make sure to replace the Your computer
name and your domain name) and enter it in the scheduled task as:
cscript e:\scriptname.vbs computerToReboot

We have many machines all scheduled using this same task (All run from a
single administrative machine) and are e-mailed when the reboot occurs.  I
have never had an error since going this route.

Option Explicit


' Program - RemoteReboot.vbs '

' Author - Paul Bergson '

' Date Written - 04/15/07 '

' Description - Is a more drastic remote reboot '


Dim OpSysSet

Dim OpSys

Dim strComputer

Dim iMsg

Dim iConf

Dim Flds

Dim strSubject

Dim strHTML

on error resume next

strComputer = WScript.Arguments.Item(0) 'Get server name

If WScript.Arguments.Count = 1 Then

Set OpSysSet = GetObject("winmgmts:{(Shutdown)}\\" _

& strComputer _

& "\root\cimv2").ExecQuery("select * from Win32_OperatingSystem where

For Each OpSys in OpSysSet




Wscript.Echo "Server Name required. Reboot operation Aborted!"


End If

'Send out an e-mail on the reboot

set imsg = createobject("cdo.message")

set iconf = createobject("cdo.configuration")

Set Flds = iConf.Fields

With Flds

.Item("") = 2

.Item("") =


End With

strHTML = strComputer & " has been automatically rebooted by Your Computer
Name" _

& " on " & FormatDateTime(Date(),1) & ", " & FormatDateTime(Time(),3)

strSubject = strComputer & " has been rebooted"

With iMsg

Set .Configuration = iConf

.To = "" ' Destination e-mail address

.From = ""

.Subject = strSubject

.HTMLBody = strHTML


End With

set imsg = Nothing

set iconf = Nothing

Paul Bergson
MVP - Directory Services
MCT, MCSE, MCSA, Security+, BS CSci
2008, 2003, 2000 (Early Achiever), NT4

Please no e-mails, any questions should be posted in the NewsGroup
This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights.
John replied on 21-Mar-08 01:02 PM
I used "shutdown /r" without giving any reason. Scheduled it at 6:00 am this
morning. I just checked the log. It seems to do what it's supposed to.
Server restarted at 6:00 am.

Thanks for your reply anyway.
John replied on 21-Mar-08 01:06 PM
I don't make it a habit to schedule unattended shutdowns or restarts. I did
it because software uninstallation needs a restart but I can't do that
during business hour. Therefore I scheduled a restart while no one is at the

Thanks for the script below. Very much appreciated.
Jon Silveus replied on 21-Jan-09 01:16 PM
What I wish to do is email, or otherwise message, any shutdowns & restarts and their event tracker info to designated recipients.  Is there a way I can incorporate the provided VBS script to become part of the Shutdown Event Tracker, or would I need to incorporate it into Windows Error Reporting?