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In the group-policy editor, I see an option to add scripts to be executed on Startup and another option for scripts to be executed on Shutdown.

Are these intended for personal use? And if so, are there any really useful ones out there?

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I think they are mostly used in a business environment and controlled by the Group Policy, but you can certainly use those on your home computer no problems.

For our work they are used for mainly mapping network drives based on who is logging into the computer, but you can use then for any number of things like installing printers, copying files, deleting files, start/stop services, etc.

A good place to find sample scripts to common problems is the Hey, Scripting Guy! blog. They have a bunch of good stuff over there.

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Scripts are a basic (and slightly easier to manage) way of doing automated things in comparison to scheduled tasks, when you log on and off.

In particular, the most common reason for using them is for network shares, printers, software rollout, third party software check ins etc.

For a personal use - you may want to map a few drives, or if there is something you do on a schedule, but other than that, scheduled tasks may be a better use for you.

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At work I used this method to automatically backup locally stored files to a network share by configuring a .bat script that ran the command:

xcopy "c:\local Files\" "x:\local files\" /y /d /c /l /h

At home I used a similar command to backup some files to a hard drive and a USB stick.

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