Cool Tools

How to logoff or shutdown a PC automatically

poweroffDo you sometimes need to automatically logoff or shutdown your PC after a certain time like after an hour? Photo by curiouslee.

As far as I know the common OSes like Vista or XP doesn’t allow us to automatically logoff or shutdown the computer completely upon any inactivity. To achieve this capability, a 3rd party tool has to be installed.

The tool that I’m talking about is called Romaco Timeout – A software to limit the amount of time a user spends on the computer.

romaco logo

There are a few ways how we can utilize this free tool:

Limit employee’s Internet usage

I have seen some departments within an organization disabling Internet usage for all PCs within that department. Only emails are allowed, but no browsing. Instead of disabling the Internet for all, occasionally some staffs really do need the Internet for work related matters such as research purposes.

In this case, the department can prepare one or two machines dedicated for Internet research, however, the PC usage will be limited to a certain timeframe by utilizing Romaco Timeout tool. This way, the employees using this PC are aware of the time limitation they have on the Internet, thus forcing them to use the Internet more productively rather than idling away time on the Internet surfing non work related matters.

Logoff or Shutdown a PC after a certain time

Sometimes we download files in the middle of the night, then go to bed and leave the machine turned on the whole night. If we know that the download will be completed in another half and hour and wouldn’t want to wait that long just to shutdown the PC, this tool can be utilized to automatically shutdown our machine after a certain timeframe.

For example, if your download will be completed in 3o minutes, simply set the timer to shut down your machine after an hour, and it will do just that saving you hours of electricity.

Limit PC usage time for a Cybercafe user

Most Cybercafe owners would invest on a cybercafe system to help automate the management of Internet usage within the premise. But if you’re looking for a simple solution to limit a customer’s time based on the number of hours he / she paid for, then this tool can help you restrict the usage time for the user.

For example, if a customer requested for 2 hours of usage, all you need to do is set it in Romaco Timeout the 2 hours limit and start the timer. After the customer has been on the PC for 2 hours, there will be a pop up to warn the user that the machine will log off in X minutes.

Limit student’s usage on a school PC

I remember that many years ago I didn’t have a PC to work on my school assignment. The only place where I could get access to a PC is in school. The problem is, most of the time it’s being used by others since it’s based on first come first serve basis with no time limitation. And those days, some people can really use the PC for a very long time not to mention the slow running machines.

If your school is allowing students to use the PCs for free, it’s good to use this tool to set a timeframe on the PC usage so that everyone gets a fair use of the school PCs.

Limit kid’s time online [Hat tip:]

Just like playing video games or watching the tv, some kids can basically surf and use the Internet the whole day. With this tool, we can set it so that after they use it for a certain time, say an hour, the PC will shut down on its own, thereby limiting their computer usage to a certain timeframe.

I haven’t tested this on my kid yet since he is only 2 years old. I hope I need not turn to this tool to stop him from using the computer for too many hours but rather teach him the importance of having a balance lifestyle.

The above are some ways how Romaco Timeout can be utilized to logoff or shutdown the computer in order to limit the amount of time a user spends on it. See a sample screenshot below:

Romaco Screenshot

For find out more on how the tool works, head on over to Romaco Timeout to download and use the tool. Thanks to Mark Furneaux for making this tool available.

About the author

Bob Lee

Hi! My name is Bob Lee and I’m a web developer / technical writer who specializes in developing and reviewing web applications. As an entrepreneur, blogger, developer, and tech enthusiast, I have been in this field for more than 10 years, and have been loving every minute of it.

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