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Cancel or Delete Scheduled Tasks in Windows 7

Earlier this week I showed you how to create reminders without Outlook using Task Scheduler in Windows. There will be times when you no longer need a Reminder or other Scheduled Tasks to run. Here’s how to disable or delete them.

Note: Task Scheduler is a feature in XP, Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8.

Click Start and type: Task Scheduler in the Search box and hit Enter.

Start Menu

Task Scheduler opens up. Expand Active Tasks to see a list of everything that is scheduled to run.
Active Tasks

Now scroll through the list and find the task you no longer want to run and double click it. For example here I’m canceling the Disk Cleanup task I created.

Highlight Disk Cleanup

Next, the Task Scheduler Library opens. If you only want to stop it temporarily, right click on the task and select Disable.

Disable Task

The Status will change from Ready to Disabled.

Status Disabled

Or, if you want to completely get rid of a task, right click and select Delete. Here I’m deleting a reminder that I set up.

Delete Task

Alternately, you can highlight the task and click the Delete or Disable icon under the Actions panel on the right.

Actions Panel

Then verify you want to completely wipe the task. Click Yes.

Confirm Delete

Make sure to only delete the tasks you’ve created or are sure you don’t want running. A lot of programs add their actions to the Scheduled Tasks Library for checking for updates or performing other vital actions.

A good example is Carbonite backup…you don’t want to disable that from running automatically.

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10 Responses to Cancel or Delete Scheduled Tasks in Windows 7

  1. Ziggy July 11, 2012 at 10:14 am #

    Thanks again Brian. Another fine article on Task Scheduler. By the way CCleaner and System Internals Auto Runs also give you a view of scheduled tasks and the option to disable or delete them.

    • Brian Burgess July 11, 2012 at 10:40 am #

      oh great tip Ziggy! I guess I didn’t know about that. Thanks!

      • Steve Krause July 11, 2012 at 10:47 am #

        yeah — CCLeaner is great. It let’s you nuke things in startup etc…. Spybot Search and Destroy lets you do that as well however I stopped using that a few years ago. Felt a little buggy after awhile…


      • Bill Mac March 1, 2015 at 9:12 am #

        Many thanks Brian, After trying all day to get SpyHunter to stop interfering with my system, your clear Task Scheduler instructions enabled me to stop the intrusion. I still can’t uninstall it, however, as the drop down from Uninstall changes to Install.

        • Mario Ivanic February 9, 2016 at 2:22 pm #

          Great tips that worked for me. Thanks

    • Divilo May 15, 2017 at 12:07 pm #

      Ziggy, you’ll never see this, but thanks for mentioning ccleaner. Could not delete a task using the method in this article as the library was always empty.
      Popped into ccleaner and job done!!

  2. Ron April 21, 2013 at 3:03 pm #

    Is there any way to do this for Windows 8 at the DOS command prompt? I have a problem where there is a registry optimizer program that is always running at boot time in a loop causing Windows not to load. I want to interrupt this because it just calls itself over and over instead of going to Windows. I can get to the DOS prompt, but don’t know how to kill this task.

  3. Robyn May 24, 2013 at 12:26 pm #

    Thank you so much! You are the only one who gave clear instructions on this, after I searched & read many things. Thanks for your help!!

  4. veer October 10, 2015 at 4:45 am #

    Hi Dude,

    plz tell me how to create a task to system automatically on. please tell me..

  5. Haris November 16, 2016 at 5:57 am #

    Helped resolve my issue, thanks!

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