Scheduling Process Automations

Overview of Process Automation Schedules

A Process Automation can be scheduled to run at periodic times, even if no one is logged-in during execution. This is useful if you want to report updated information at regular intervals. When you schedule the execution of a Process Automation, Goverlan creates a Scheduled object and inserts it into the Windows Scheduled Tasks folder of the local machine. You should only use Goverlan to modify or remove these scheduled tasks.

The Process Automation main view uses different icons for scheduled versus non-scheduled Process Automations.

 http://assets.goverlan.com/userguide_img/Scope%20Actions%20v8/2015-07-21_15-00-06.png Process Automations Object
Process Automations object which is not scheduled.
 http://assets.goverlan.com/userguide_img/Scope%20Actions%20v8/2015-07-21_15-10-08.png Process Automations Object Scheduled
Process Automations object which is scheduled.
 http://assets.goverlan.com/userguide_img/Scope%20Actions%20v8/2015-07-21_15-10-34.png Process Automations Object Scheduled Disabled
Process Automations object which is scheduled. However, the schedule has either been disabled or has not been properly configured to run.

It also contains a Next Run column which displays scheduling information.

Creating a Schedule

To schedule a Process Automation, select it and either:

The Schedule window includes three tabs as described below.

IT Automations Task Tab

The IT Automations Task tab allows you to configure specific information for scheduling a Process Automation.

  • Enabled – Use this option to either enable or disable a configured schedule. Disabled schedules are not executed.
  • Run As – Specify the user account to use to run the Process Automation. A user account must be specified for all scheduled Process Automations. Once you have specified the user account, click on the Set password… button to enter the password.
    NOTE:

    Once you have entered an account in the Run As field, it is remembered for subsequent scheduling of Process Automations. However, the password is not saved. Make sure that a password is specified every time

Execution Mode

Defines what is done with the reported data previously generated.

  • Reset Historical Data and Re-run On All Nodes: Erase previously generated report data and re-run the Process Automation on the full scope.
  • Keep Historical Data and Re-run On All Nodes : Re-run the Process Automation on the full scope and merge the resulting report data with the existing one. This mode is useful to generate an asset management data set.
  • Keep On Running Until All Nodes Are Processed: Preserve already generated report data and re-run the Process Automation only on the objects which failed during the last execution. If new report data is generated, it is merged with the existing data set. This mode is useful if you configure a Process Automation to execute tasks (like installing an MSI package), and want to keep on executing the Process Automation at regular intervals until all machines are processed.

Output format

Specify the output format for the Process Automation. A Process Automation always generates outputs in XML. However, you can configure the Process Automation to convert the XML output into other formats. For more information about the available output formats, see Viewing a Report. The output files are stored in the directory as configured in the Process Automation object.

Run the program

If you have a script which processes the generated output data (i.e., transfer the generated report onto a Web server), you can configure its execution in this field. For more information, see: Understanding Execution and Output Settings.

Email Notification

This section can be used if you want to receive an email notification containing execution information once the scheduled Process Automation is executed. To activate email notification, enter an email address in this field. To deactivate email notification, simply leave this field blank.

If you activate email notification, the following settings must be configured:

SMTP Settings
Since the Process Automation runs under an arbitrary user account, Goverlan may not be aware of the SMTP default settings of your company. Click on the SMTP Settings button to access the SMTP configuration window.

Subject field
The text entered in this field will be placed in the email subject field.

Content
Use this section to configure the contents of the email notification. By default, the email body contains the name of the Process Automation, the execution status code, and if applicable, a link to the generated report. You can request more information to be emailed as follows:

Execution Console – Include the execution console content in the email. The console information includes error messages and execution statistics (see Console Window in Executing a Process Automation).

Output Report – Include the Process Automation report in the email. The report is inserted in the email in a simple text format. Use special care when activating this option. If the Process Automation generates a large amount of information, it might not be appropriate to embed it into the notification email.

Once you have configured the email notification settings, you can click on the Test Account button. Goverlan will then send a test email to the specified email address using the configured SMTP settings.

Schedule & Settings Tabs

The Schedule tab is used to configure the actual execution schedule and the Settings tab is used to configure miscellaneous execution options such as power management settings. These tabs are identical to the native Windows Scheduled Task Schedule and Settings tabs and behave the same way.

For more information about these settings, use the Microsoft help files provided. You can also use the context-sensitive help option to view the description of each setting.

Modifying a Schedule

To modify the settings of a Process Automation schedule, select it and either:

  • Right click on the mouse and select Scheduler >> Modify Schedule from the menu.
  • Click on the Schedule… button in the Process Automations Ribbon Bar.

To disable or re-enable a Process Automation schedule, select it and either:

  • Right click on the mouse and select Scheduler >> Enable/Disable Schedule from the menu.
  • Click on Schedule On/Off button in the Ribbon Bar.
NOTE:

If you cannot enable a schedule which is shown as disabled, check that the schedule settings are correct.

To remove the schedule of a Process Automation, select it and either:

  • Right click on the mouse and select Scheduler >> Remove Schedule from the menu.
  • Click on the  Un-Schedule button in the Ribbon Bar.

Scheduled Process Automation Execution

A scheduled Process Automation executes at the designated times, even if no one is currently logged-into the machine. The execution of a scheduled Process Automation happens in the background and the execution window is not displayed.

However, if you are currently logged-in under the account used for the scheduled Process Automation, a taskbar icon is displayed in the tray during the Process Automation execution:

http://assets.goverlan.com/userguide_img/Scope%20Actions%20v8/scope08.png

  • Place the mouse cursor over the execution icon to view the status of the execution.
  • Right click on the mouse over the execution icon to show or hide the execution window. You can also double-click on the icon to toggle the show/hide functions. Making the execution window visible will allow you to control its execution (pause, abort, etc.).

If you are not logged into the machine or are logged-in using a different user account than the one configured for the schedule, you will not see the Process Automation execution icon in the tray and consequently, you will not be able to abort the execution process.

SMTP Settings

If you have configured a Process Automation schedule to send a notification email, SMTP settings must be configured. These settings are used by Goverlan to send you the notification email. In some cases, your machines may already be configured with SMTP settings that Goverlan can use. In such a case, select the Use default settings option. However, the Process Automation may run using an account which does not have access to the default settings.

Configuring SMTP Server Settings

Select the Use the following SMTP settings option and configure the following parameters. Note: Most settings can be found under the settings of your email client (i.e., Outlook).

SMTP Server

Outgoing mail server – Enter the mail server name to be used for sending email.
Server Port Number – The port number used to communicate with the SMTP server configured.

SMTP Logon

Most SMTP servers require a connection to authenticate itself. If appropriate, enable My outgoing server requires authentication and use this section to configure the credentials to be used to authenticate to your SMTP server.

Use the Run As account information – Select this option to use the same credentials as the ones configured to run the Process Automation.

Use the following account – Select this option to specify the SMTP credentials username and password.

Use TLS

Use this option when you have an email server that requires TLS for relaying email messages.

Testing the SMTP Settings

Once you have configured your SMTP settings, click on the OK button to return to the Process Automation Schedule Configuration window. It is good practice to test your SMTP configuration for accuracy. To do so, click on the Test Account button. Goverlan then uses the configured SMTP settings to send a test email to the configured email address.

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