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Adding CRON Job to your Cpanel

If you need to delete temporary files once in a while, or you want to perform database backups on a regular bases, you can do that using cron jobs. What cron job do is simply access your script or perform specified command in a specified period of time. 

You've probably already noticed Cron job section in your hosting Cpanel or other hosting application. So what do you need to do to set up a Cron job?

First of all you can create simple php file, which does the thing you want to do periodically.

Then in Cron job, you choose the period of time.

Simplest examples:

  •  * * * * *  -  every minute
  • 0 * * * *  -  every hour when minute == 0
  • 0 5 * * *  -  every day when hour == 5 and minute == 0 (05:00 am)
  • 0 0,12 * * *  -  twice a day at 00:00 am and 12:00 pm


And then depending on your hosting configuration, you can try one of this ways to make your script work:

#before real commands, some optional parameters

#add this i the end of you command, so you won't get emails after every successful cron job
&> /dev/null

#add this to create error logs if you can't get your cron job to run correctly

#So ways to run a php script, of course username is your username not just a word
#some paths may differ again based on your hosting configuration, 
#contact your hosting for mor einformation
#or use wget or lynx commands below

# with Easy Apache 3 which your hosting probably have

php /home/username/public_html/cron.php

#Optional flag if you get errors like php is directory from command above
php -q /home/username/public_html/cron.php

#for PHP4
/usr/local/php4/bin/php /home/username/public_html/cron.php

#without Easy Apache 3

#for PHP5
/usr/local/php5/bin/php5 /home/username/public_html/cron.php

# for PHP4
/usr/bin/php /home/username/public_html/cron.php

#you can also modify your PHP script by adding this line below 
#to the begging of your script


#and then saving your file as .sh file and adding this command to cronjob
/bin/sh /home/username/public_html/

#if nothing works you can always use wget command and acces your file externally

#using lynx command
lynx --dump

#using wget commang. --spider parameter is used so files won't be downloaded, 
#so no unnecessary files will be stored
wget --spider

#simplest ways to set mysql backups

#create backup
mysqldump -u mysql_user -ppassword database_name > backup.sql

#restore from backup
mysql -u mysql_user -ppassword database_name < backup.sql

On some hostings there is a problem running php script with php -q. Possible reason is if you use mysql connection in your php script and you use localhost as host to connect to. Using your external host to connect to mysql in your script might solve this problem.

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