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AGH1965

As soon as possible option of Scheduler

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Posted (edited)

The scheduler not only starts a scheduled scan with "as soon as possible" option immediately after adding or modifying it, it also skips the first scheduled moment. As if it thinks: "You got one scan that you didn't ask for, but you won't get more scans than you ask for." Very strange.

Edited by AGH1965

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Posted (edited)

Oops, I forgot to mention the good news: Except for the first scheduled scan with "as soon as possible" setting, which is replaced by a scan directly after configuring it, all other scheduled scans are either carried out at the scheduled time or carried out later if the system was offline at the scheduled time.

So the "as soon as possible" option of the scheduler has defenitely been improved! Thanks ESET!

However, missed scans with as soon as possible" setting are not really carried as soon as possible. Yesterday, after turning on my pc, I was waiting for EIS to start a scan it missed the day before. I waited for about 10 to 15 minutes, but EIS didn't start the scan. Then I turned off my pc and turned it back on again about an hour later. Then almost directly after booting into Windows EIS started the scan. Of course it's great that EIS started the missed scan, but why didn't it do that an hour earlier?

Edited by AGH1965

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I've reported a similiar problem with ESET Mobile Security which was set to run for example at 5AM , it would just run one hour before or half an hour later , it wasn't precise with timing due to some kind problem , I didn't get an answer by anyone and I've stopped looking at that bug I don't know if it's related to both products.

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@Marcos Can you explain what algorithm the "as soon as possible" option uses for starting missed scans, because it is certainly not straightforward as soon as possible.

To test the "as soon as possible" option of the scheduler, I configured a daily scan at 20:00 with "as soon as possible" option activated, but normally my computer is switched off before 20:00. So normally EIS misses the scheduled scan. When I turn on my computer the next day, then EIS doesn't start the scan as soon as possible as I would expect, but instead EIS waits till the end of the day. For example, yesterday EIS started the missed daily scan at 17:36:44 and today EIS started the missed daily scan at 16:36:53. Is it a coincidence that there is almost exactly 23 hours between the two scans or is that part of the "as soon as possible" algorithm EIS uses?

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, AGH1965 said:

 To test the "as soon as possible" option of the scheduler, I configured a daily scan at 20:00 with "as soon as possible" option activated, but normally my computer is switched off before 20:00. So normally EIS misses the scheduled scan. When I turn on my computer the next day, then EIS doesn't start the scan as soon as possible as I would expect, but instead EIS waits till the end of the day. For example, yesterday EIS started the missed daily scan at 17:36:44 and today EIS started the missed daily scan at 16:36:53. Is it a coincidence that there is almost exactly 23 hours between the two scans or is that part of the "as soon as possible" algorithm EIS uses?

Actually this is an improvement since previously if a scheduled run ASAP scan was missed, it never ran until its next scheduled scan time. 

Edited by itman

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@itman Indeed it is a massive improvement. We went from an option that didn't do anything to an option that doesn't do what it is supposed to. However, when I see this behavior, then it seems to me that ESET intented to create something much smarter than straightforward "as soon as possible" functionality. So maybe this behavior is exactly what ESET intended, but it isn't what a user expects when he reads "as soon as possible". So maybe ESET should consider renaming the option.

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@itman You reported that your scheduler started a scan one hour too early. Are you sure it started the scan one hour too early or could it also be that the scheduler started the scan 23 hours after the previous scan?

On one computer I configured a weekly scan on Mondays at 18:00 with "as soon as possible" option activated. Last week the scan was missed because the computer was switched on a little too late, but at 18:24 the scheduler started the missed scan. This week the computer was switched on at about 17:15, but the scheduler didn't wait till 18:00 to start the weekly scan. Instead the scan was started at 17:24. That is exactly 6 days and 23 hours after the previous scan.

This together with the experiences I reported earlier, give me the impression that the scheduler has a "23 hours bug".

 

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3 minutes ago, AGH1965 said:

You reported that your scheduler started a scan one hour too early. Are you sure it started the scan one hour too early or could it also be that the scheduler started the scan 23 hours after the previous scan?

In that posting I was referring to the default Log Maintenance scan. And it is running correctly now at its scheduled scan time. Note that the missed scan option for this event is ASAP.

Try this. Set your missed scan time to 1 hour. See if the scan runs at boot time if your PC is powered off at the scheduled scan time.

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Oh no, the situation became even stanger. I reported already that the weekly scan on Monday started 36 minutes too early at 17:24, which was exactly 6 days and 23 hours after the previous scan, but that is not all. At 18:00, i.e. at the scheduled time, the scheduler started a second scan. Two scans trying to beat each other. Why on earth?

@itman and I can easily notice that the scheduler doesn't do what it is supposed to. Why can't ESET?

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On 3/18/2019 at 7:23 PM, itman said:

Try this. Set your missed scan time to 1 hour. See if the scan runs at boot time if your PC is powered off at the scheduled scan time.

I configured a daily scan at 17:55, but this time with the "immediately, if time since last run exceeds a specified value (hours)" option activated in combination with a 1 hour setting. Yesterday the scan started at 17:55 as scheduled. So it wasn't missed, because I forgot to switch off my computer on time. Oops, sorry. However, today the scan started at 16:56. So either one hour too early or 23 hours after the previous scan. Again I don't get the logic. Hopefully @Marcos is willing to explain.

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Posted (edited)

It appears at this point, the only scan that is running at its true scheduled time is one coded with the missed scan option of ASAP. Also, it has yet to verified if the ASAP missed scan option is working properly. It was not in vers. 12.0.

I have a scheduled weekly scan due to run tomorrow at noon. It has the 1 hour missed scan option. I will post tomorrow if the scan ran at it schedule noon run time.

Edited by itman

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16 hours ago, itman said:

I will post tomorrow if the scan ran at it schedule noon run time.

The scan started an hour ahead of schedule. So my assumption was correct. The bug manifests when anything other than missed scan is set to ASAP is selected.

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Posted (edited)
On 1/19/2019 at 10:26 PM, itman said:

There is another work around for this problem.

You can create a .bat script containing Eset's command line ECLS scanner as shown here: https://support.eset.com/kb3417/?locale=en_US&viewlocale=en_US .

Well, I tried it, but it didn't make me happy.

I discovered quickly that ecls.exe is in folder C:\Program Files\ESET\ESET Security. So I used that same path for the /base-dir option, like in the example. The scanner reported an initialization error though. It toke me quite some time to figure out that not using the /base-dir option solved this problem.

Then the other command line options puzzled me. The description of the /auto option says: "Scan and automatically clean all local disks." Yes, I want to scan all local disks, but I don't want to clean automatically. So, I didn't dare to use the /auto option. I found the option /clean-mode=None though. The description says: "No automatic cleaning will occur." So I chose that instead of the /auto option. However, will the scanner still scan all local disks?

Furthermore I chose the /aind option. The description says: "Show activity indicator." However, the system tray icon didn't show the animation it normally shows during scanning. Neither did egui.exe show any scanning activity.

I guess ecls.exe isn't the right tool for me. I would prefer a command line tool that triggers normal scans that are visible in egui.exe. Also I would like to make use of the predefined scan profiles available in egui.exe. 

Edited by AGH1965

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 Eset designed ECLS command line scanning primarily for:

Quote

Command line scanning is useful if your computer is currently operational only in Safe Mode or if you are a network administrator and want to initiate scanning from an external application.

 

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Unfortunately I can no longer monitor the erratic behavior of the scheduler. None of the scans executed after April 1st is visible in Log files - Computer scan. I'm not aware of changing any setting.

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My context scan ran today shows in the Computer scan log file. My scheduled scan is scheduled for tomorrow, so we will see then if it shows.

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Today the scheduler started 2 identical scans at the same time directly after booting, but only one of them is shown in Log files - Computer scan.

I'm about to throw in the towel. The more thorough you look at EIS, the more strange things you notice.

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On ‎4‎/‎3‎/‎2019 at 3:58 PM, itman said:

My scheduled scan is scheduled for tomorrow, so we will see then if it shows.

I said I would post back on this, so here's the result.

My PC was in sleep mode Thursday at it's scheduled noon run time. Note I had previously set the missed scan retry option to 24 hrs.. The scan did not run at any time later on Thursday when the PC powered up. The scan did not run on Friday at boot time. The PC also happened to be powered down at noon on Friday. Upon powered up the PC later Friday, the scan still did not run.

Bottom line - Eset scheduled scan missed time option is the same as that on prior versions; it just doesn't work. Really not a big issue for me personally.  I will just run an on-demand scan whenever. Note that Eset only recommends a full in-depth scan once a month which sounds about right to me.

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On 4/8/2019 at 7:29 PM, itman said:

Bottom line - Eset scheduled scan missed time option is the same as that on prior versions; it just doesn't work.

Indeed!

On 4/8/2019 at 7:29 PM, itman said:

Really not a big issue for me personally.

What is the use of adding features to a product when these don't work? Customers remember failures better than successes. Therefore, either get rid of features that don't work or fix them.

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Yes, I did notice something interesting for the only Eset provided scheduled scan that is time-dependent; log maintenance. This time format coding along with an interval of "0" is what I am coding to try in my user created scheduled scan to see if it resolves the issue.

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2 hours ago, Ferdin said:

This time format coding along with an interval of "0" is what I am coding to try in my user created scheduled scan to see if it resolves the issue.

How did you do this? The Eset GUI will alert that a value of "0" is an invalid value.

Eset_Scheduler.thumb.png.51a7f559a9be1930aa1f7352a5a91d0c.png

 

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Here some more results:

If consecutive scheduled daily scans can't run at the scheduled time, then the scan will only be done as soon as possible if the previous scan was at least 23 hours ago. If that is not the case yet, then EIS will wait until it is.

If consecutive scheduled weekly scans can't run at the scheduled time, then the scan will only be done as soon as possible if the previous scan was at least 6 days and 23 hours ago. If that is not the case yet, then EIS will wait until it is.

In my opinion this is not how it should be! 

For example: A scan is scheduled to run every Monday at 00:00:00, but it doesn't get the chance to run at that time. The computer isn't booted any earlier than Wednesday 20:00:00, but almost directly after booting the missed scan is executed. The next week again there is no chance to run the scan at the scheduled time, but now the computer is booted on Monday at 08:00:00. I would expect the scan to run then almost directly after booting, because it is scheduled to run every Monday at 00:00:00 and in this case 08:00:00 is as soon as possible, but instead EIS decides to wait until Wednesday 19:00:00, which is 6 days and 23 hours after the previous scan. In other words, if there is never a chance to run the scan at the scheduled time, then it will take many weeks to get the scan running on Monday again, because the time will only be advanced 1 hour a week.

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Please create a support ticket since this is something that cannot be solved here in the forum.

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Support ticket? Why? What is the use of this forum if you don't use it as input for improving your products? Both itman and I gave enough information for any decent software tester to find out what is wrong. Besides, some of the behavior seems very deliberate. (For example the 23 hours or the 6 days and 23 hours.) Personally I think the scheduler does what was intented by the programmers. So probably it is no bug but a misunderstood feature. This forum could be very helpful explaining customers why the product behaves the way it does and what the intentions of the programmers were. Why don't you do that?

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The purpose of this forum is to share the knowledge among standard users, advanced users and ESET moderators. It is not meant to serve as a substitute of contacting customer care, especially if an issue is not obvious, easily reproducible, if diagnostic logs are required  and multiple iterations with support or developers are needed. Also this forum cannot track the progress of tricky issues and thus ensure timely response.

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