If you are a freelancer who charges by the hour, you will know important it is to track the amount of time you have spent on each project. While there are several good time tracker software for Windows and Mac, there are only a few for Linux, and most of them are too basic and simple. While researching for a good time tracker software for Linux, I come across TimeSlotTracker, which is cross-platform compatible and comes with the plenty of features that are lacking in other software.
TimeSlotTracker comes with many features. It allows you to create tasks in hierarchical format and view data in various format. It even supports exporting of data to iCal, which can be very handy for some of you.
TimeSlotTracker is created in Java, and that explains why it is cross-platform compatible. To make it easy to install and use, there is the native installer for both Windows and Linux. If there is anything unpleasant about a java-based app, it must be the ugly interface and the inability to integrate with the OS theme. This is what it looks like in Ubuntu.
Luckily, you can change the theme layout in TimeSlotTracker.
Once installed, the app comes with a list of task and sub-tasks. You can only have one main task, but you can add unlimited sub-tasks (and sub sub-tasks) to it. Each sub-task is equivalent to a project. Using the Play, Pause and Stop button at the toolbar, you can quickly and easily get it to track the time spent on each project.
At any point of time, you can pause or restart the timeslot. I love the part where you can edit the selected timeslot. This is particularly useful when you have forgotten to start the time tracking while working on a project and only remember it an hour later. You can start the time tracking and edit the start time to an hour ago.
Taking screenshots while tracking time
Another feature of TimeSlotTracker is to take a screenshot of your desktop on a regular interval. This allows you to track the task you are doing while the time tracker is active. It is a good way to convince your client that you are indeed working during the tracked time.
The screenshot feature can be enabled under the “Configuration -> Monitoring” section.
TimeSlotTracker also allows you to export your data to several formats, including HTML, XML and CSV. You can also choose to export a Summary report, Detail report or Journal report. It will be great if it supports PDF format too.
I am not sure about Windows or Mac, but in Linux, the TimeSlotTracker is almost the perfect app for me. Being cross platform compatible also means that you can easily port your data from platform to platform without any issue, which is important since my work requires me to work in different OS. In Ubuntu, I do have a minor issue with the “Minimize to tray” feature. Once minimized, I am not able to restore back to maximize mode. The “Tip of the day” popup is rather annoying too, but it can be turned off at the Configuration section, so it is not too bad. All in all, if you are looking for a good, useful, and free time tracker software, TimeSlotTracker could be the one for you.
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