Cron is a time-based scheduling service on Linux operating systems. The Windows equivalent is task scheduler. A service and a daemon could also achieve this but will require an entire application to be developed, compiled and installed onto the host OS.
The cron command-line utility is a job scheduler on Unix-like operating systems. Users who set up and maintain software environments use cron to schedule jobs (commands or shell scripts), also known as cron jobs, to run periodically at fixed times, dates, or intervals. It typically automates system maintenance or administration—though its general-purpose nature makes it useful for things like downloading files from the Internet and downloading email at regular intervals.Cron is most suitable for scheduling repetitive tasks. Scheduling one-time tasks can be accomplished using the associated at utility.
Cron's name originates from chronos, the Greek word for time.