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How do you use cron? I have just started using it for backups, but it is a tool that should have a large number of applications. I would be interested in learning how different people use cron.

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2 Answers 2

Some interesting uses?

  • Well, I used to use it on contracts to automatically submit an identical timesheet every week, because I was always working on the same tasks (and roughly the same hours). It saved me from having to put up with painful, unnecessary, timesheet applications.

  • We also used it to build a rudimentary mail-based status reporting application in a very tightly locked down, tiered network environment. Rather then suffer through all the pain of punching holes through the firewall, we used cron/ftp to forward "messages" which were then put into email form once we'd gotten them out of the secure area.

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Anything that needs to occur on a regular basis.

  • Running the code that charges monthly subscription fees
  • Checking if other servers are up
  • Rotating log files
  • Pruning database tables of old data
  • Sending daily and weekly email reminders to users
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