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I have an application (winpenguin; it creates cute little penguins that wander around your Windows desktop) that I would like to run when my PC is locked. How's this possible?

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Need a little bit more detail on what you're trying to do. Which application? What functionality do you need? etc. – cole Jan 3 '13 at 11:27
application named winpenguine that i want to run.. – vishal sharma Jan 3 '13 at 11:33
@vishalsharma Can you help me to understand the question. Do you want to run the program only when the PC is locked, or only at certain times regardless of it being locked? – Dave Jan 3 '13 at 11:36
its only going to run when pc is getting locked?? – vishal sharma Jan 3 '13 at 11:39
@vishalsharma Hang on, you want to run a program which is a visual thing, only when the PC is locked, and therefore not visible to you? – Dave Jan 3 '13 at 11:40

2 Answers 2

up vote 4 down vote accepted

Unless the program is designed to be a screen saver you can't run it when the computer is locked. By this I mean when the computer becomes idle and the rules for a screen saver apply.

Obviously if the program is already running it will continue to run. If you want to see it still running then you need to disable the screen saver.

If it is a screen saver go to:

Control Panel > Personalization > Change Screen Saver

then select the screen saver from the list:

enter image description here

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+1 for Unless the program is designed to be a screen saver you can't run it when the computer is locked. – TFM Jan 3 '13 at 12:05
Is this right? I have programs which run and continue to do so when PC is locked (like Visual Studio); Are we mixing terms, between logging off and locking or is my understanding incorrect? – Dave Jan 3 '13 at 12:25
@DaveRook - Running programs will continue. I meant programs to run when the screen is locked. – ChrisF Jan 3 '13 at 12:27
@ChrisF - I'm sorry, I still don't understand. If this is the case, then why does Scheduled Tasks give me the option to do this whether I'm logged in or not. I just wrote a bat file to copy a file, scheduled it for 4 minutes time, locked my PC, waited 10 minutes, returned and the program had run. – Dave Jan 3 '13 at 12:36
@vishalsharma You are missing the point, if the program is not a screen saver it will run, but you will not be able to see it running, so what is the point? – Scott Chamberlain Jan 3 '13 at 16:56

You may create a scheduled task using the following steps (the task will run when the PC gets locked):

  1. Open Task Scheduler
  2. Click on Create task... under Action (menu bar)
  3. Name the task on the General tab
  4. Add a new trigger on the tab Triggers
    • Begin the task: On workstation lock (drop-down menu on top of the New Trigger window)
  5. Finally, add a new action on the Actions tab (you just have to browse for the program)
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