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What is Task Scheduling in Laravel?


What is Task Scheduling in Laravel?.

Scheduling and running tasks are crucial for any development process. It makes it easy for developers to work efficiently in automation. For instance, imagine you are working in a web development firm and need to complete tasks within a tight deadline. To speed up the development process, you hire remote developers and assign them tasks with predefined timeframes; not only this helps you to complete the undertaking in automation but saves you time. In the same way, Laravel offers scheduling tools like a command scheduler, which allows you to automate the work to complete the task.

Before Laravel introduced a command scheduler, developers relied on Cron to schedule tasks in their applications. Cron is a widely-used utility in Unix-like systems.


Laravel Cron Job.

Developers used to rely on Cron to schedule tasks for automation. They would write custom scripts or commands, specify the schedule using the Cron syntax, and configure the system's crontab to execute those scripts at the designated times.

Although Cron was a great tool it lacked some functionality, to the nightmare of many developers. 

For example, you have an eCommerce application and need to run a task every Monday at 3 AM to generate a weekly sales report and send it to the management team via email.

Using Cron, you would need to create a separate script or command to generate the sales report and configure Cron to run it every Monday at 3 AM. However, Cron alone lacks built-in features for logging, capturing output, and sending emails. You need to write additional code or configure external tools to handle these aspects. 

Cron also lacks task grouping, which is essential; since the only other solution would be having to write all codes manually for every task. This would be much slower.

Laravel Command Scheduler

Laravel Command Scheduler.

Cron is undoubtedly the best at scheduling tasks. However, it lacked some simple features which Laravel fulfils. The Laravel feature ‘command scheduler’ helps automate the task you specify. It allows developers to provide faster Laravel development service.

In Laravel, you can leverage the task scheduling feature to achieve the task more conveniently. You can define a custom Artisan command specifically for generating the sales report and configure Laravel's task scheduler to run it every Monday at 3 AM. Laravel's task scheduler provides built-in logging, output capture, and the ability to send emails, simplifying the entire process.

Additionally, with Laravel's task scheduler, you can easily add constraints or custom logic. For example, you might want to ensure that the task only runs on weekdays or during business hours. Laravel's expressive syntax and methods, like weekdays() or between(), allow you to define these constraints effortlessly.

Laravel also gives task scheduling in groups, which gives an edge compared to Cron. Suppose you are running a Laravel development company and developing a school management system where you need to automate certain tasks, such as taking attendance and sending reminders to absent students. 

To accomplish this, you can utilize Laravel's task scheduling feature and define scheduled commands.

For example: 



In this example, we have two tasks related to attendance management in a school system. The check-attendance task is scheduled to run daily, while the send-reminders task is scheduled to run weekly. Both tasks are grouped under the attendance-tasks group.

By grouping these tasks together, you can easily manage and execute them as a single unit.

Overall, the Laravel command scheduler is the perfect tool to automate a given task. It offers an expressive syntax, integrates seamlessly with the rest of your codebase, and provides features like task logging, output capture, and task lifecycle hooks. 

These benefits make it easier to maintain and debug your scheduled tasks, resulting in improved productivity and reliability for your application.

How to Execute Task scheduling in Laravel

  1. Define your scheduled tasks: Open the 'App\Console\Kernel' class in your Laravel project. You can define your scheduled tasks using the '$schedule' object inside the schedule method. Use the available methods to specify the task frequency, a command to execute, and any additional constraints or conditions.

  2. Set up Cron job or Task Scheduler: Laravel's task scheduler relies on a Cron job or Task Scheduler to run the scheduled tasks automatically.

  3. You can set up a scheduled task using the Windows Task Scheduler. Create a new task that runs the 'php' command with the full path to the 'artisan' script and the 'schedule:run' command as arguments. Set the desired frequency for the task execution.

  4. Run the task scheduler command manually (optional): If you want to test the task scheduling without waiting for the Cron job to execute, you can run the following command in your Laravel project's terminal:

  5. php artisan schedule:run

  6. This command will trigger the task scheduler and execute any tasks that are due at the current time.

  7. Once your task scheduling is set up, the Cron job or Task Scheduler will automatically execute the scheduled tasks according to their defined frequency. You can monitor the task execution by checking the Laravel logs or any output generated by the scheduled tasks.

Final words

Laravel is one of the finest PHP frameworks you can ever use, making your development process seamless. Features like task scheduling are great for running tasks in automation, giving you an edge to increase productivity. Helping Laravel developers and Laravel development companies to provide a faster development approach.

Of course, Laravel has a learning curve if you want to be a Laravel developer. But if you want to start your website built with Laravel, you can always choose to Hire Laravel developers for a faster development process. Feel free to call us to fulfil your requirement to build a custom-made Laravel website for you.