When you want commands or scripts to run at some particular time, you don’t have to sit with your fingers hovering over the keyboard waiting to press the enter key or even be at your desk at the right time. Instead, you can set your task to be run through the at command. In this post, we’ll look at how tasks are scheduled using at, how you can precisely select the time you want your process to run and how to view what’s been scheduled to run using at.
at vs cron: For those who’ve been scheduling tasks on Linux systems using cron, the at command is something like cron in that you can schedule tasks to run at a selected time, but cron is used for jobs that are run periodically – even if that means only once a year. Most cron jobs are set up to be run daily, weekly or monthly, though you control how often and when.
[Source: Network World]