We usually prefer to do computer tasks that take a long time to complete, unattended over night while we are sleeping or while we are away from home. Examples of such unattended tasks are backups, video encoding, hard drive defragmentation, downloading etc. While such over night jobs are great for saving time, the same cannot be said about saving energy. The difficulty lies in scheduling the shutdown because the time to complete the task cannot be easily predicted. CPUOff is a software that solves this problem.
CPUOff is a small freeware application that monitors the CPU load and initiates computer shutdown if the average CPU load has been found to be below a set threshold for a preset time. CPUOff is a great utility for saving energy by making sure a computer shuts down when it has finished an unattended task.
CPUOff operates by checking the average CPU load once a second and comparing it with a preset threshold. If the CPU load falls below the threshold and stays for a user defined period, the program initiates a shutdown. CPUOff supports all shutdown mode - Hibernate, Power Off, Reboot, Shutdown and Standby. The program can also be configured to delay the shutdown process by up to 10 minutes giving that much time to the user if he wishes to cancel the shutdown.
The program itself consumes very little system resources but it does run with high priority. The program also logs all event into a log file.
CPUOff has an optional slave program that can be used to remotely shutdown a computer. The slave program is installed on the remote PC and it monitors communications from the main program, which occur twice a second and initiates shutdown when the master program enters shutdown. The communication is one way, there is no communication back to the main program. The lack of two way communication makes the Slave tool pretty unreliable. I wouldn’t recommend you to use this option.
CPUOff supports WIndows 2000 Service Pack 4 (32bit), Windows 2003 Enterprise Edition Service Pack 1 (32 and 64 bit), Windows 2003 Enterprise Edition Release 2 Service Pack 1 (32bit and 64 bit), Windows XP (32bit) and Windows Vista - all variants (32bit and 64 bit). The program is free but requires registration to use.