Introduction to Cron Jobs for Website’s Repeated Tasks

You probably have seen the “Cron” term in the list of services and features while searching for a new web hosting provider for your website. Of course the experienced web users (especially Linux fans) and web developers know the meaning of this term, and today we are going to present some sort of a beginners guide for those who don't know much about Cron but still do want to take advantage of it.

In ducks and bunnies, Cron is a tool allowing you to automatically carry out the repeated tasks. In other words, you won't have to do the boring job manually. Even though the idleness is the root of all evil, this time laziness was the reason why the cron has been invented. The number of tasks that cron can do for you is really impressive and the technology that stands behind this tool is quite simple, that's why almost anyone can manage this tool after reading some comprehensive tutorials. There are many web hosting companies that offer cron jobs feature in their list of services. Now let’s get to the point and dig deeper, cron is a scheduling daemon (daemon is a computer program in Unix that runs in the background). So, cron allows scheduling commands to run periodically on certain dates.

How it works?

The core of the crone is a cronetab – a configuration file which specifies shell commands and periods. A user without experience can be easily frustrated by editing the cronetab, which is why most of the web hosting services provide a simple and intuitive interface for managing the crone’s settings. Here is a table of formats available for the current version of cron - basically this is a set of all possible time formats that you can use in cron:

  • Minutes (0-59)
  • Hours (0-23)
  • Day of month (1-31)
  • Month (1-12 or JAN-DEC)
  • Day of week (1-7 or SUN-SAT)
  • Year (1970 - 2099)

To handle timezone issues most of cron implementations have "TZ=" special-case which allows interpreting subsequent crontab entries according to certain timezone.

What You Can Do with Cron

The list of possible processes that can be automated and executed by cron is pretty huge, plus every web project usually has a set of project-specific tasks that are pretty much unique. However, we will mark the most popular ones just to give you a better understanding on the point:

  • Cleaning up database
  • Automated data reports mailing
  • Cleaning up disk space
  • Virus scanning
  • Cleaning up cache
  • Rotating log files
  • RSS feeds auto posting

Cron Tutorials

Again, these are only a few examples of how cron can be used and we are sure that you can find dozens of processes that you can maintain with cron. Also we've decided to share some important cron tutorials that would help you to improve your skills and gain more knowledge concerning cron. These will be useful for web developers, webmasters and simple rookies that only start their way in the world of web technologies.

Managing Cron Jobs with PHP

* * *

How To Setup A Cron Job In Magento – Magento Cron Tutorial

* * *

Cron Job Tutorial - Learn about cron jobs and how they work

* * *

cPanel Tutorial: Advanced - Cron Jobs

* * *

Cron Job Tutorial

* * *

Don’t miss out these all-time favourites

  1. The best hosting for a WordPress website. Tap our link to get the best price on the market with 82% off. If HostPapa didn’t impress you check out other alternatives.
  2. Website Installation service - to get your template up and running within just 6 hours without hassle. No minute is wasted and the work is going.
  3. ONE Membership - to download unlimited number of WordPress themes, plugins, ppt and other products within one license. Since bigger is always better.
  4. Ready-to-Use Website service is the ultimate solution that includes full template installation & configuration, content integration, implementation of must-have plugins, security features and Extended on-page SEO optimization. A team of developers will do all the work for you.
  5. Must-Have WordPress Plugins - to get the most essential plugins for your website in one bundle. All plugins will be installed, activated and checked for proper functioning. 
  6. Finest Stock Images for Websites - to create amazing visuals. You’ll get access to to choose 15 images with unlimited topic and size selection.
  7. SSL Certificate Creation service - to get the absolute trust of your website visitors. Comodo Certificate is the most reliable https protocol that ensures users data safety against cyber attacks. 
  8. Website speed optimization service - to increase UX of your site and get a better Google PageSpeed score.

Edward Korcheg

Edward is a professional technical writer who is also passionate about making stunning designs in Photoshop. You can find many useful tutorials in his collection of articles at MonsterMost.

Get more to your email

Subscribe to our newsletter and access exclusive content and offers available only to MonsterPost subscribers.

From was successfully send!
Server error. Please, try again later.

Leave a Reply