Zeit – A GUI Tool to Schedule Cron and At Jobs in Linux

Zeit is an open-source GUI tool for scheduling jobs via “crontab” and “at”. It is written in C++ and released under GPL-3.0 License. It is an easy to use tool that provides a simple interface to either schedule a one-time job or iterative jobs. Zeit also comes with an alarm and timer which uses sound and notify the user.

Zeit Features

  • Schedule, modify or remove CRON jobs.
  • Schedule or remove AT jobs.
  • Schedule, modify or remove Timer/Alarm.
  • Modify environment variables.

How to Install Zeit in Linux

For Ubuntu and Ubuntu-based distributions, a stable release can be installed by adding the PPA repository as mentioned below.

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:blaze/main
$ sudo apt update
$ sudo apt install zeit

You can also try the development version of Zeit by adding the following PPA repository.

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:blaze/dev
$ sudo apt update
$ sudo apt install zeit

For other Linux distributions, you can build it from sources as shown.

$ git clone https://github.com/loimu/zeit.git
$ mkdir build && cd build
$ cmake ..
$ make -j2
$ ./src/zeit

To launch Zeit, simply type.

$ zeit &
Start Zeit Tool
Start Zeit Tool

Run Non-Periodic Commands Using at Command

Non-periodic commands allow the scheduling command to run one time. Yes, you are right. It is using the “at” command. Go to “VIEWSELECT NONPERIODIC COMMANDS” or Press “CTRL+N”.

Non-Periodic Commands
Non-Periodic Commands

Choose “Add Command” as shown in the below image and add the entry. I am scheduling a command to run at 17:35. This command will create an empty log file in the Downloads folder with today’s date added to the file name as shown below.

NOW=$(date +%F); touch /home/tecmint/Downloads/log_${NOW}.txt
Schedule a Command
Schedule a Command

Now there is an entry added. You cannot modify the scheduled command but it is possible to delete the command before it runs using “Delete Command“.

Delete a Command
Delete a Command

At 17:35 my command ran fine and created an empty log file.

Command Executed Successfully
Command Executed Successfully

Run Periodic Tasks Using Cron Jobs

To schedule Cron jobs, choose “periodic task” or press “CTRL + P“. By default zeit will launch with “Periodic task“.

Schedule Periodic Tasks
Schedule Periodic Tasks

Enter a description, command, and scheduled time and press ok to add the entry to crontab.

Schedule a Command to Run
Schedule a Command to Run

Now my job is scheduled to run daily at 13:00.

Scheduled Task
Scheduled Task

You can check the crontab using “crontab -l” where the entry will be added automatically.

$ crontab -l
List Cron Jobs
List Cron Jobs

In addition to “at” and “crontab“, there is two feature to use alarm/timer which reminds us by invoking the sound. This entry will also be added to the crontab.

Set Alarm to Scheduled Task
Set Alarm to Scheduled Task

That’s it for this article. Explore Zeit and share your feedback with us.

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