Running an Applescript (scpt) at regular intervals through plist file in Launchd

Discussion in 'Mac Programming' started by rothnd, Oct 22, 2008.

  1. rothnd macrumors newbie

    Oct 22, 2008
    Hey all

    I'm hoping someone out there has learned something useful about launchd, plist's, and timing scripts.

    I have a rather simple script that I was trying to make run on a schedule through launchd (15 min to be exact) mainly to get to learn the system.

    I'll have to post the code later since I'm currently on a Win comp at work and it won't read the scpt file.

    Anyway, the problems... I finally got through it all enough to load the script into launchd through a valid plist ("verified in Lingon" though I don't think was necessary since all Lingon did was add fields withe "false" values). The jist though is the plist file (I've named com.nathan.messagealert.plist to keep the *^#4& formatting going) calls on an Applescript (which runs perfectly fine in the editor or even as an app on startup) which it should then run on a "StartInterval" schedule of 900 sec. Now, I read and found the proper way of making the script an executable file which made it load but it's acting very funny. Remember the time schedule of 15 min I mentioned?? Well, when the script was loaded it kept running and running and get the idea. It wouldn't stop until I killed it.

    Any thoughts on why this would react this way? Is a scpt file ok? Does the scpt need a "quit" or "exit" at the end of it? I'm just analyzing the possibilities...

    Anyway, I'll post the code when I get home. I'd appreciate anything!
  2. rothnd thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 22, 2008
    The Code to View

    Ok, so here's my follow-up with the actual coding

    Here is the applescript .scpt file that has no other properties other than being a scpt at the moment (not run only, or app, etc.)

    say "Welcome back, Nathan."
    tell application "Mail"
    	repeat with thisAccount in every account
    		set thisInBox to mailbox named "INBOX" of thisAccount
    		set thisUnreadCount to unread count of thisInBox
    		if thisUnreadCount is not 0 then
    			set unreadMessages to (messages of thisInBox whose read status is false)
    			if thisUnreadCount > 1 then
    				set pluralText to "s"
    				set verbText to "are"
    				set pluralText to ""
    				set verbText to "is"
    			end if
    			set speechCountText to "There " & verbText & " " & thisUnreadCount & " unread message" & pluralText & " in " & (name of thisAccount) & "."
    			say speechCountText
    			tell application "Safari"
    			end tell
    		end if
    	end repeat
    end tell
    And here is the plist file in use to call it

    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
    <!DOCTYPE plist PUBLIC "-//Apple//DTD PLIST 1.0//EN" "">
    <plist version="1.0">
    Again, any input on why this would cause the script to run over and over and over would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!!!
  3. rothnd thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 22, 2008
    Updates Plist fixed, Applescript fails

    Ok, Just to get caught up here and make it very clear where I'm at here's the new full story

    The applescript script seems to be failing for some reason despite compiling and working properly from the script editor.

    Here is the plist that calls the script and seems to be working properly (by that I mean that it executes the first say command at 5 min intervals)

    And here is the script

    I thought by fixing the issues with the plist this would all be good but I am, yet again, at a loss. I'd like to mention that the script file is just that...a .scpt file... This file was not saved with any other properties offered (e.g. Run on Start, App, etc). Is this causing the problem or....? Also, again, it does execute the first say command but mail, the first application to open, never opens and the script never continues.

    I'd appreciate any info in learning the problem here is!
  4. iSee macrumors 68040


    Oct 25, 2004
    It this running as a Daemon or an Agent?
    A daemon is not going to run as the current user, so it is not going to have access to the current user's mail boxes. Also, daemon is not going to be able to access the GUI (e.g. put up the Main window).

    So, if you aren't already, run it as a user agent
    (you put the property list in ~/Library/LaunchAgents or maybe /Library/LaunchAgents rather than the daemon location).

    Also, I think even for launch agents, I think the property list needs to be specific about whether or not it needs to display a GUI. I don't remember exactly how that's done... Look in here under launch agents:
  5. rothnd thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 22, 2008

    Thanks for the technote link...very helpful. I did have it running as an agent initially and is working properly now. However, it seems like the issue was that any changes to the plist were not being executed upon making those changes (immediate) rather they were only made after a system shutdown. Is this normal? Is there anyway to make changes take effect sooner/without shutdown?

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