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I need an shutdown timer application that can run on Windows XP. I would like for it to require a password to cancel the timer.

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I am not sure what you are asking. Possibly: "I need a shutdown timer application that can run on Windows XP, but it has to have password protection so that nobody can cancel the timer without the password?" – KCotreau Aug 1 '11 at 5:03

Use the built-in shutdown timer in windows, shutdown.exe. It lets you specify how long to display a warning for, and what the warning text should be. Cancelling the shutdown requires administrative privileges or granting the user permission via group policy to manage timed shutdowns.

To initiate a shutdown, use the following command from the command prompt. You can also create a desktop shortcut to it:

shutdown -t nn -s -c "Notice to show to user"

nn is the number of seconds to show the warning before shutting down. -s tells it to do a shutdown; you can use -r instead to do a reboot.

To cancel the command, open a command prompt from an administrator account, and type

shutdown -a

This will stop any timed shutdown in progress. To create a shortcut that will let any user do this if they have the administrator account's password, use:

runas -user:administrator shutdown -a

This will open a command prompt asking for the administrator account's password, and will then stop the shutdown.

If you need more control than these options offer, you may need to look for a third party program. These options however will work for any Windows computer and are built-in. You can also run the timed shutdown from a scheduled task if you want the shutdown to occur at a certain time every day.

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Brilliant. I was going to post the same thing. – surfasb Aug 1 '11 at 6:51
+1: Additionally, if you get and use MS' PsShutdown in place of Shutdown (works almost exactly the same) you can specify longer time-out intervals, as well as set it to shut down at a specific time of the day. – Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007 Aug 1 '11 at 15:15

As this question did not have a good answer (unless you are going to do some coding) I am inclined to say neither does yours.

In addition, what is to stop someone from just killing the process? Nothing a process can really do to prevent it.

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+1 true enough. – KCotreau Aug 1 '11 at 5:08

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