Do you always start your computer at the same time every day? You can automatically turn it on at a time of your choice so that it is ready to go when you sit down in front of it.
It might seem unnecessary with modern PCs that boot quickly, but we love to automate tasks. This can be useful for your PC to automatically start in the middle of the night to run downloads after hours as well.
Look for an option in your PC’s BIOS or UEFI
This option is available on many PCs, but not all. The availability of this option (and how it looks) depends on your PC hardware.
To find the option, you will need to visit your PC’s UEFI or BIOS settings screen. (UEFI is the modern replacement for traditional PC BIOS.) To access it, restart your computer and press the appropriate key during the boot process – this is often F11, Delete, or Esc. It may appear on your computer during the startup process, or your PC may start up too quickly to display the screen.
On some PCs, you may need to select an “UEFI Firmware Settings” option under Troubleshoot> Advanced options on the Windows 10 advanced boot options screen. Hold down the “Shift” key while clicking the ” Restart ”in Windows 10 to access the startup options.
For more information on accessing the UEFI or BIOS settings screen, see your computer manual. If you have assembled your own PC, consult the manual for the motherboard.
In the UEFI or BIOS settings screen, look for an option that will start your PC on a schedule. On an HP computer that we have, the option was under Advanced> Power on BIOS.
Here we can choose a power-on time and the days of the week it applies to.
The available options and their names will depend on your PC. The option will not be available on all PC configurations, so your PC may not have it.
For example, LifehackerDavid Murphy found this option in Advanced Settings> APM Configuration> Power On by PSTN. (These acronyms refer to “Advanced Power Management” and “Real-Time Clock” respectively.) You may have to search the setup screen to find it.
Soon: What does the BIOS of a PC do and when should I use it?
How to connect and run programs automatically
If you want to save time or make sure your PC is running specific apps and tasks when it starts up, there are some additional settings that you can change.
To have your PC automatically sign in to the Windows desktop upon startup, you can configure Windows 10 to automatically sign in to an account. This option has some security drawbacks, but it’s available and it’s up to you if you want to use it.
You can also have Windows automatically start any program when you log on. Here’s how to add your own favorite programs to the Windows startup process.
With Windows configured to start, connect, and launch programs automatically at a specific time, you can make your PC do more than just start automatically – you can automatically accomplish and start tasks at a specific time.
Soon: How to make your Windows 10, 8, or 7 PC connect automatically
How to make your PC automatically wake up from sleep mode
If there is no option to enable autostart in your PC’s BIOS or UEFI setup screen, you can have your PC wake up automatically. This is also useful if you put your PC to sleep when you are not using it.
To configure this, use the Task Scheduler to create a task that wakes up your computer at a customizable time. You will also need to enable “wake up timers” in Windows, otherwise the task will not activate. Once you have done that, you can put your PC to sleep and it will wake up at the time you have chosen.