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Option 1 Schedule your job in cron to run every hour (or every other hour), but prefix the job with something like this (presuming you have SHELL=/bin/bash in your crontab): [ $[RANDOM % 12] -eq 0 ] || exit 0; YOUR_JOB_HERE Then there will be an approximately* one in twelve chance of the job running each time its scheduled. Option 2 Schedule a cron job ...


You could use the command 'at' at now +4 hours -f commandfile Or at now +$((($RANDOM % 10)+2)) hours -f commandfile


Why not use watch to update qstat at a regular interval? watch --interval=0.5 qstat will refresh the terminal with the output of qstat every 0.5 seconds. It doesn't quite satisfy your request of not running qstat repeatedly, but it's not manual at all.

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