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I have encountered many different names for job schedules in SQL Server, ranging from the job name where it is used to a short recap of the schedule itself. I would like to give a clear, descriptive and consistent name to new job schedules, so it could be re-used easily and it's easy to see what kind of schedule it is.

Examples of encountered job schedule names:

Run every night
Every 4 weeks on Monday
Schedule job X
DAILY (which then runs only 6 days a week)

I find it hard to think of a good way to name them. So: what would be smart, consistent names to give to a job schedule? How do you name them? Why?

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What about something like 'I do this every Monday'? That is, the concise description of the task and when it is run. – dezso Jul 20 '12 at 9:23
@dezso: could work, although I foresee some long schedule names: "I do job x, job y and job z every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday at 6 AM, 8AM, 10AM, 2PM and 5PM". – Josien Jul 20 '12 at 9:36
Well, yes. But I must admit it is quite descriptive. If the length is a problem, you can make it shorter like 'job x, job y, job z ON Mo, We, Fr, Su AT 6AM, 8AM, 10AM, 2PM, 5PM' – dezso Jul 20 '12 at 9:49
Those seem like edge cases to me, that aren't likely to be re-used. I've used names like "daily, on the hour" and "Sundays at midnight." If something isn't simple, don't try to force it to be. You can leave some of those so that they actually have to click one more time to look at the properties. – Aaron Bertrand Jul 20 '12 at 11:28
If you put the name of jobs that use the schedule on schedule's name you can create a trap to yourself, as you can create a new job and associate it with a already existing schedule forgetting of update the schedule name to include the new job... – Fabricio Araujo Jul 24 '12 at 19:58
up vote 3 down vote accepted

It seems to me that using a job name in the schedule name prevents it from being re-used, so I've chosen to focus on a shorthand for the schedule contents. I'm now using the following naming convention:

times per week - days of the week - run time

So for the examples in the question the new names would become:

  • Run every night -> 7xPW - MTWTFSS - 22.00
  • Every 4 weeks on Monday -> 0xPW - Mxxxxxx - 6.15
  • 21.00hr -> 5xPW - MTxTFSx - 21.00
  • DAILY (which then runs only 6 days a week) -> 6xPW - MTWTFSx - 0.00

This seems to work for now because we have lots of weekly and once-a-day jobs. I'm not utterly happy with the 0xPW for schedules that occur every 4 weeks or monthly (what are we gonna do with the job that runs every 4th day of every month?), but it's not a big deal and the 0xPW at least tells us to look to the description for more info.

The daily jobs that run every xx minutes are not straightforward to name in the above manner - although 2016xPW - MTWTFSS for a once-every-5-minutes schedule is pretty telling.

share|improve this answer
I've tried this naming method for quite a while now and I am actually pretty happy with it. So I will accept my own answer here. Of course, other suggestions are still very welcome! – Josien Sep 20 '12 at 11:21

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