Deta Cron#

A Deta Micro can be set to run on a schedule from the deta cli using the deta cron set command.

In order to set a micro to run on a schedule, the micro's code needs to define a function that will be run on the schedule with the help of our library deta.

The deta library is pre-installed on a micro and can just be imported directly.

Set Cron#

Use deta cron set to schedule the micro.

You can set the cron in two ways:


You can define the rate at which a micro should run. It is comprised of a value and unit.

  • value: is a non-zero positive integer
  • unit: unit of time, can be minute, minutes, hour, hours, day, days. If the value is 1 the unit must be minute, hour or day.


  • deta cron set "1 minute" : Run every minute
  • deta cron set "2 hours" : Run every two hours
  • deta cron set "5 days" : Run every five days

Cron expressions#

Cron expressions allow you more flexibility and precision when setting a cron job. Cron expressions have six required fields, which are separated by white space.

Month1-12 or JAN-DEC,-*/
Day-of-week1-7 or SUN-SAT,-*?L#


  • The , (comma) wildcard includes additional values. In the Month field, JAN,FEB,MAR would include January, February, and March.

  • The - (dash) wildcard specifies ranges. In the Day field, 1-15 would include days 1 through 15 of the specified month.

  • The (asterisk) wildcard includes all values in the field. In the Hours field, would include every hour. You cannot use * in both the Day-of-month and Day-of-week fields. If you use it in one, you must use ? in the other.

  • The / (forward slash) wildcard specifies increments. In the Minutes field, you could enter 1/10 to specify every tenth minute, starting from the first minute of the hour (for example, the 11th, 21st, and 31st minute, and so on).

  • The ? (question mark) wildcard specifies one or another. In the Day-of-month field you could enter 7 and if you didn't care what day of the week the 7th was, you could enter ? in the Day-of-week field.

  • The L wildcard in the Day-of-month or Day-of-week fields specifies the last day of the month or week.

  • The W wildcard in the Day-of-month field specifies a weekday. In the Day-of-month field, 3W specifies the weekday closest to the third day of the month.

  • The # wildcard in the Day-of-week field specifies a certain instance of the specified day of the week within a month. For example, 3#2 would be the second Tuesday of the month: the 3 refers to Tuesday because it is the third day of each week, and the 2 refers to the second day of that type within the month.


  • You can't specify the Day-of-month and Day-of-week fields in the same cron expression. If you specify a value (or a *) in one of the fields, you must use a ? (question mark) in the other.

  • Cron expressions that lead to rates faster than 1 minute are not supported.


  • deta cron set "0 10 * * ? *" : Run at 10:00 am(UTC) every day
  • deta cron set "15 12 * * ? *" : Run at 12:15 pm(UTC) every day
  • deta cron set "0 18 ? * MON-FRI *" : Run at 6:00 pm(UTC) every Monday through Friday
  • deta cron set "0 8 1 * ? *" : Run at 8:00 am(UTC) every 1st day of the month
  • deta cron set "0/15 * * * ? *" : Run every 15 minutes
  • deta cron set "0/5 8-17 ? * MON-FRI *" : Run every 5 minutes Monday through Friday between 8:00 am and 5:55 pm(UTC)


const { app } = require('deta');
// define a function to run on a schedule
// the function must take an event as an argument
app.lib.cron(event => "running on a schedule");
module.exports = app;

With this code deployed on a deta micro, the deta cron set commands will execute the function based on the cron rate or expression. For example

$ deta cron set "10 minutes"

will set the function to run every 10 minutes. In order to see the execution logs, you can use the visor


A function that is triggered from the cron must take an event as the only argument. The event will have the following attribute.

  • event.type: string type of an event, will be cron when triggered by a cron event

Remove Cron#

Use deta cron remove to remove a schedule from the micro.

Cron and HTTP#

You can combine both cron and HTTP triggers in the same deta micro. For this you need to instantiate your app using the deta library that is pre-installed on a micro.

const { App } = require('deta');
const express = require('express');
const app = App(express());
app.get('/', async(req, res) => {
res.send('Hello deta, i am running with HTTP');
app.lib.cron(event => {
return 'Hello deta, i am cron job';
module.exports = app;

Cron and Run#

You can use both cron and run triggers in the same deta micro. You can also stack run and cron triggers for the same function.

const { app } = require('deta');
const sayHello = event => 'hello deta';
const printTime = event => `it is ${(new Data).toTimeString()}`;
// only run;
// stacking run and cron, 'time'); // action 'time'
module.exports = app;