April Fool's Day Contest: a Simple Computer Prank That Will Shut Down the Computer

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Introduction: April Fool's Day Contest: a Simple Computer Prank That Will Shut Down the Computer

A computer prank that will shut down the intended computer in a set amount of time and display a message of your choice! Perfect to play on the curious-minded.
Warning: Make sure that there aren't any important downloads or documents running at the time of activation. If there are, tell the victim how to cancel it (explained at the end of the instructable).
NOTE: Will only work with Vista.
NOTENOTE: I will NEVER clean up my desktop! :D

Step 1: Prank Settings

Right click on the desktop, select 'New' and click create shortcut.
In the window that pops up, type in:
shutdown.exe -s -t 120 -c "Your computer has committed suicide, have a nice day."

The number behind the -c is the time in seconds that the computer will shut down in, you can put in any amount here. If there isn't anything important going on, select a short time such as 5 seconds or so. If there IS something important, set it to a longer time such as 120 seconds or more so that you have time to deactivate it.
In between the quotation marks, write a message such as 'WARNING: VIRUS DETECTED: BEGIN SHUTDOWN IN 60 SECONDS'.

Step 2: Naming the Shortcut

In the window, enter the name for your prank shortcut. Remember that if you change your mind, you can always change it when it's on the desktop.

Step 3: Activating It

The icon will appear on the desktop. To activate it, simply double-click. The message will pop up and in the amount of time you set after that, the computer will automatically shut down.

Step 4: Deactivating

If you need to deactivate the script, go to 'Run' and type in shutdown -a.

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    78 Comments

    Is there an alternate way for Windows XP?

    Now it had been effective

    Why it doesn't work on my laptop!!! I'll gonna right click it butI had double clicked it & the message appeared but I had not been logged off

    Deathnote! ^.^

    After I click finish with the name of the shortcut I cant find where it is, can someone tell me how to fix this?

    2 replies

    Do I need a different code for windows 7?

    Not sure cuz I have a Windows Vista computer, but the file could be hidden. Go to "Computer" and then "Organize" in the toolbar, "Folder and Search Options" and then the "View" tab, and finally "Show hidden files and Folders". Win 7 might not have this AT ALL, so you may want to search "How to show hidden files and folders on Windows 7". Then, right click and click the preferences tab, and un-check "Hidden" under "Attributes"
    Good luck!

    P.S. This isn't an April Fools prank. No, really xP

    If I could do this to my Girlfriend's iPad it would be amazing, lolz

    I tried this, and it worked, but the message i put in did not appear. How do i fix this?

    1 reply

    after the -c the comment must be on space away and in quotes

    Ex. -c "hello world"

    It's nice to change the icon to resemble firefox, for example, and rename it too. Try and start that browser, will ya :D

    Of course, if you want to be especially evil, set it to delay for ten, fifteen minutes, and put the shortcut in the startup folder. If you don't know what the startup folder is, find out or stay out of it, you don't want to break anything important.

    Initial D for the win!!!!!!!

    You are bloody brilliant my friend!! XD
    i've set this up on my friend's computer and my sister's laptop.
    Can't wait for the chaos to begin!!

    a code that works great is shutdown -s -t 00

    hahaha i do this to my friends computers allll the time, but i just make a batch file, whatever, same thing. i ususally put something that scares them alot, like "Computer must restart for virus to take effect." and then i put "pause" in the file, and then if they continue with the command, it cancels the shutdown, but ther usally freaking out too much to press it.

    2 replies

    can you reply with the code? i wanna do that

    haha yah no problem
    you know how to make a batch file though?

    you just go into notepad and enter this,

    @echo off
    shutdown /s /t 60 /c "Computer must restart for virus to take effect."
    pause

    shutdown /a

    then when you go to save it, name it whatever you want, BUT at the end add .bat
    and when it asks for save file type, go to All Files instead of Text Document

    So you just name the file something you think they'll click on.

    OH AND

    THIS WORKS FOR VISTA AND XP.