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GNU mcron

A cron program is one which runs unattended jobs (not necessarily involving dynamite) on a computer at regular pre-set times.

The GNU package mcron (Mellor's cron) is a 100% compatible replacement for Vixie cron. It is written in pure Guile, and allows configuration files to be written in scheme (as well as Vixie's original format) for infinite flexibility in specifying when jobs should be run.

The package was originally conceived, developed and produced by DMBCS, and the copyright was assigned to GNU in the very early days, as it should form a key part of the GNU system performing regular house-keeping tasks. These days it is officially in the custodianship of the maintainers of the excellent GUIX distribution, in which it plays that key role. The GNU maintenance page is over here.

A historical white paper, reproduced here, describes the motivation and initial design concepts of mcron.

Downloading

As an official part of the GNU system, mcron packages can be downloaded from http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/mcron/ and ftp://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/mcron/.

The current sources which we maintain at DMBCS can be downloaded by typing

git clone http://rdmp.org/dmbcs/mcron.git dmbcs-mcron
at the command line. Note that this repository is currently ahead of the official one, it holding the candidate for a future minor release (timings depend on developments elsewhere, namely in the Guile package).

Guix

Our Guix channel descriptor is (this goes into your $HOME/.config/guix/channels.scm)

(channel
    (name 'dmbcs-development)
    (url "https://rdmp.org/dmbcs/guix-channel.git"))

With this (after a guix pull), you can then import our version of Mcron into your profile with

guix install mcron@1.2.0+dmbcs

(Note that this will pull guile@3.0.2-dmbcs into your Guix profile, too).

Documentation

Documentation is an integral part of the mcron package. Once installed, the user can type info mcron, man mcron, or, in a pinch, mcron --help at the command-line to get information in various amounts and depths.

The full manual can be read online here.

Contact and Support

Please click here if you wish to send us a message, for help or support, or even just to let us know that you are successfully using this software!

Mailing list

If you would like to receive e-mail notices of matters arising about this application, you may request this through the contact form.

Contribution to development

We will happily consider contributions to the source code if you provide the address of a GIT repository we can pull from, and will consider all bug reports and feature requests made to the above contact form.

Donations

If you use this application please consider a bitcoin donation if you can. A small amount informs us that there is interest and that we are providing a useful service to the community; it will keep us motivated to continue to make open source software. Donations can be made by bitcoin to the address 1PWHez4zT2xt6PoyuAwKPJsgRznAKwTtF9.

This web page Copyright © 2020 DM Bespoke Computer Solutions Ltd.

This page was last modified March, 2020

This page is http://rdmp.org/dmbcs/mcron.