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Scheduling when a Robotic Process Automation robot runs

Updated on December 18, 2022

Use the Pega RPA Service to schedule when unattended robots start and stop. The schedule is stored in the RpaSchedule.json file.

The RpaSchedule.json file is located in the C:Programdata\Pegasystems folder in version 19.1 and later and in the C:\Programdata\OpenSpan folder in version 8.0 SP1 and earlier. In this file, there is a JSON element for each day of the week. In each JSON element, you specify when the robot starts and how long its session lasts. You can schedule one session per day.

Note: There are two methods for scheduling when robots perform work: Scheduled and OnDemand. This article discusses the Scheduled method. For information on the OnDemand method, see Configuring Pega Robot Manager version 6. You must have Robotic Automation version 8.0 SP1 2019 or later to work with Robot Manager version 6. If you are using version 8.0 SP1, update to version 8.0 SP1 2025 or later. For best results, update to version 19.1 or later.

Before you begin

In the local RPAService.config file, set the Mode key to Scheduled. Also, make sure the RpaSchedule.json file is located in the correct C:\Programdata folder.

To specify an unattended robot’s schedule, perform the following steps:

  1. Open the RpaSchedule.json file in a text editor.
  2. Set the Enabled property to True for the days on which you want the robot to run.
  3. In the StartTime property, specify the time in HH:MM format at which you want the Pega RPA Service to start looking for jobs to send to the robots.
    The Pega RPA Service uses a 24-hour clock. For example, to start the service at 1:30 pm, set the StartTime property to 13:30.
  4. Set the DurationMinutes property to the number of minutes you want the Pega RPA Service to look for jobs. The following code is an example that shows how you set up a robot to run on Tuesday from 1 a.m. until 5 am:
  "Tuesday": {
    "Enabled": true,
    "StartTime": "01:00",
    "DurationMinutes": 240
  1. Save and then close the file.
Note: Restart the Pega RPA Service any time you change the RpaSchedule.json file settings.

When the Pega RPA Service detects that a robot should be started, the service performs the following tasks:

  • Logs in to Windows by using the Windows credentials that are supplied by the Credentials Manager (credmgr.exe) utility. For more information about the Credentials Manager, see Pega Robotic Automation Credentials Manager utility.
  • Starts Robot Runtime as the user specified by the Credentials Manager utility by using the --Runtime flag. If you do not supply Robot Runtime credentials, the Pega RPA Service starts Robot Runtime as the user who is logged in to Windows.
It can take up to three minutes to complete the Windows login and Robot Runtime startup process.

When Robot Runtime detects that the scheduled session has ended, it performs the following tasks:

  1. Completes the current work item, if any work is in progress.
  2. Shuts down Robot Runtime.
  3. Logs off Windows.
  • Previous topic Configuring Robot Runtime 8.0 SP1 2018 and earlier in RPA implementations
  • Next topic Understanding the SchedulerDefinitions.xml file for managing login pathways

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