I have a plugin that creates a WP cron when activated. It runs every hour.

I need to add a simple button somewhere in the dashboard for my client, that would trigger this cron. I don't want the client to do this from plugin's interface (e.g. Cron manager), which might seem too complex for him.

Is there a native WP method or an easy way to run a specific scheduled cron?

1 Answer 1


When you register a scheduled event for WordPress' cron, the 3rd argument is a hook name:

wp_schedule_event( time(), 'hourly', 'my_hourly_event' );

And you add a function to run on this hook with add_action():

add_action( 'my_hourly_event', 'do_this_hourly' );

This will cause do_this_hourly() to run whenever the scheduled event runs. This works because when the scheduled time occurs, your action is called like this:

do_action( 'my_hourly_event' );

Which causes anything hooked to my_hourly_event with add_action() to run. So you can run the hooked function, like do_this_hourly(), manually at any time by just manually triggering your event with do_action(), as above, such as in response to a form submission or AJAX request.

Alternatively, you can just run the hooked function directly:

  • But this will not trigger the cron - it runs the logic associated with it. Depending on the specifics of OP's question, this might suffice. However if the cron is set to run at each full hour and I manually run it at x:55, it will run again at y:00 which might not be the desired.
    – kero
    Feb 19, 2020 at 9:13
  • 1
    True, but OP didn't specify that as an issue, and this is also what the plugins they refer to do when you trigger them manually. Feb 19, 2020 at 9:20
  • 1
    I get what @kero is saying and it indeed might be a problem in some cases. However it is a sufficient solution for me, I don't know why I didn't think of this. Thanks. Feb 19, 2020 at 10:27

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