Introduction: Shut Down Your Computer With a Cell Phone
This video will show you how to shutdown your computer from anywhere using a texting capable cell phone, Microsoft Outlook and a free account from www.kwiry.com.
Step 1: Video Summary
Above is a video summary of what we are trying to accomplish.
Step 2: Things You Will Need
1. Make sure you have a Microsoft Outlook account and an e-mail address configured to it. This will not work with other E-mail clients such as Thunderbird because they do not support VB scripting.
2. Then next think you will need is a www.kwiry.com account. This is a free account that will allow you to send it text messages and in response e-mails those messages to your e-mail account.
3. The third thing you will need is a phone that is capable of texting. Please keep in mind that, depending on the cell phone plan you have, sending text messages will incur charges from your cell phone.
Step 3: Create the "shutdown.bat" File
The "shutdown.bat" file is a batch file that can allow you to auto-launch applications and perform tasks just by opening it up. You can make this batch file do pretty much any Windows function you want, but for this tutorial, we are going to write a script to shutdown the computer. Here's how:
1. Open up "Notepad" by going to Start > Run > "Notepad" and then click OK.
2. In the notepad editor, type in:
c:\windows\system32\shutdown -s -f -t 00
3. Save the file to your computer. You can put it pretty much anywhere on your computer. I put mine on my C: drive.
What this batch file does is it points to the shutdown function on your computer, generally located at c:\windows\system32\shutdown. You may want to double check this, as some computers may have it listed as c:\winnt\system32\shutdown. If this is the case, then you want to change your batch file accordingly. The -s tells it to shutdown the computer. The -f tells it to force the computer to shutdown so that it doesn't get hung on any open applications. The -t sets the time for it to wait before it actually shuts down. You can set it to whatever you want, but I put in 00 to set it to zero.
Step 4: Make Sure You Have a POP3 Capable E-mail Acocunt
If you already have Outlook set up to an e-mail account, then skip this step and the next step. If not, then you will need a POP3 capable e-mail account. If you don't have one, then you can sign up for a free Gmail account and then configure it to accept POP3 by doing this:
1. Go to http://www.gmail.com Gmail ] and click on "Settings" in the upper right.
2. On the resulting page, click on "Forwarding and POP/IMAP"
3. Select "Enable POP for all mail" and save your changes.
Step 5: Setup Microsoft Outlook to Accept Your E-mail Account
As mentioned above, if you already have Outlook set up to an e-mail account, you can skip this step. If not, open up Microsoft Outlook (not Outlook Express).
1. If this is your first time opening up Outlook, it will start the e-mail wizard. If it doesn't, go to Tools > E-mail Accounts > Add A New Account > Pop 3
2. Set up the Pop 3 account by entering in your user information (for help using Gmail, refer to Gmail's documentation for setting up a POP3 account.
Step 6: Get a "Kwiry" Account.
Now what you will need to do is sign up for a Kwiry account. Feel free to read the information about it on their website, but basically Kwiry is a service that forwards text messages to your e-mail account. That is what we're going to be using it for. If you have e-mailing capabilities on your cell phone, then just send an e-mail to your Outlook account and bypass this step.
Step 7: Set Up an Outlook Rule
This is the most important step of the tutorial. This will tell Outlook that once it receives an e-mail containing a certain subject line to launch the "shutdown.bat" file we created to shutdown the computer. Here's the steps:
1. Go to Send/Receive and select Send/Receive Settings > Define Send/Receive Groups.
2. Check the box that says "Schedule an automatic Send/Receive every" and then set the number box to "1 minutes" so that it checks for new e-mail messages every minute. Then click "Close".
3. Now go to Tools > Rules and Alerts. In the window that pops up, select "New Rule".
4. Select "Start from a blank rule" and make sure it's set to "Check messages when they arrive" and click Next.
5. The next page will let you select the conditions, so you want to check the box that says "with specific words in the subject line".
6. Now at the bottom of the window, click on the "specific words" link and it will allow you to enter the subject line that you want it to look for. For this instance, we want it to look for the Kwiry e-mail that we will be sending it. The subject line of that e-mail will read "your kwiry - shutdown" so enter that as the specific words and click Add and OK. Then click Next.
7. On the next page, we will be selecting the action we want it to do. For this project, we want to select "start an application". Click on the "application" link at the bottom of the window now and navigate it to the shutdown.bat file that we created. Note that you will have to change the File Select filter from "Applications (.exe)" to "All Files". Now just click Next and Finish.
Step 8: Send a Text Message
The lest step, obviously, is to send a text message. So pull out your texting capable cell phone and send a text message with the words "shutdown" to your Kwiry account (which will be 59479).
Step 9: Conclusion
You can either literally use this tutorial as a means to shutdown your computer, or you can use this as a proof of concept. You can use this method to auto-start almost any application and do various other tasks. Before you know it, you may be able to control your entire computer using just your cell phone. Let your creative ingenuity flow!