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My organisation has a policy of disabling Task Scheduler on all servers and workstations (don't ask, I tried once to wrestle the pig).

I need to collect performance stats using Data Collector Sets in Windows 7 or Windows 2008 but the Performance Monitor interface requires Task Scheduler to be running. Is this possible because I'm not trying to schedule anything (except the collection of WMI information every 15 seconds but I doubt it hands that task off to the task scheduler)? Is there any way to trick it into thinking Task Scheduler is running? If not, is there any way to temporarily override the group policy to allow Task Scheduler to run? I've found that most group policy can be overridden in this way by an Administrator by editing the registry.

On exactly the same vein, I want to defragment a hard disk on one of my workstations, but I can't get it to start because of the dependancy on Task Scheduler - is it possible to overcome this?

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If you REALLY want to achieve the same thing by other means then you had better sharpen up your scripting skills. In your position I would write a script, probably in KIX or VBS which is run on startup or similar with suitable credentials. I would create a loop which processes an INI file or similar full of data containing, JOB Name, TIME,DAY strings, and what to execute string. You could hard code the jobs if they are not going to change. The loop would run continually with a sleep X in between each loop = low impact. The value of the sleep X would determine the granularity of the jobs. In each pass you would be doing string manipulation comparisons where if the TIME, DAY, even DATE matches the current time etc execute the command string. I use similar scripts for doing all sorts of tasks however I found if it is running continually it eventually falls over due to windows resource management issues. I generally make the script self terminate itself after a fixed period or a set time having spawned another version of itself thus releasing resources etc.

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I don't think that helps with either of my problems. Please not that I DO NOT need to schedule anything. I just want to run windows' defragmentation and performance monitor. –  mjaggard Sep 13 '12 at 9:45
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Besides the overall notion that it makes little to no sense to disable the task scheduler it also greatly hinders the built-in features of the server. A big shift in Windows Server and clients was made to move automated and recurring jobs to the task scheduler as opposed to some hidden OS interface. Makes a lot of sense really, now both user and system jobs are found and managed in one place. You should really wrestle the pig again, bring some rope!

Regardless, to actually answer your question:

Yes, the performance monitor relies on the task scheduler as it is able to run scheduled scans so to speak. Theoretically you could use a different software program to automate tasks, but performance monitor still isn't going to work and once you install a program for task automation you defeat the entire purpose of disabling the task scheduler so again, why is it disabled?

You can, as an administrator, make changes to the registry that override GPO however, theoretically, the next time the GPO is pushed to the machine it should overrite and revert your changes.

As for the workstation, the defragmenter is supposed to run automatically on Win7, matter of fact it is "scheduled" to run weekly. Oh and it uses the task scheduler to execute!

Long story short, you really need to have a discussion about the purpose behind disabling the task scheduler, it makes little to no sense and can adversly effect your workstations and their automatice preventative maintenance. Makes no sense.

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Thanks for your comments. Do you have any idea where I can override this Group Policy? I've found ways to override screen savers, etc. albeit temporarily (that's fine, I only want to run the defrag / performance monitor once!). I find it quite frustrating that even though I'm not trying to schedule anything, I have to have the scheduler running. –  mjaggard Sep 5 '12 at 13:32
    
P.S. Really, I'm not starting that argument again, I think I'd get fired if I punched someone this time. –  mjaggard Sep 5 '12 at 13:33
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I'm a big guy, want me to tell someone they are an idiot for you? –  Brent Pabst Sep 5 '12 at 14:27
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In all seriousness, I really don't know how to override it, but this is certainly not a standard practice. Somone has WAY too much control. –  Brent Pabst Sep 5 '12 at 14:30
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