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What do you use for Time Tracking?

In your shop, are you required to account for every minute
of your day?

What are your feelings about recording time to this level
of detail?

What do you use to do this?
- a commercial product
- something home grown
- a form printed on dead tree
- something else

How do you allocate you time when you are recoding it?
- Client
- Client/Project
- Client/Project/Task
- etc.

I'm frustrated with the home grown one I'm using (painfully
slow and prone to crashing).

Code Slave
Thursday, August 5, 2004

I used the 1.x version (which was free). From what I hear, 2.x has more features, but you have to pay for it.
Thursday, August 5, 2004

in the starter kit there is a free time tracker project, good for time recording down to 15min intervals

Chris Peacock
Thursday, August 5, 2004

Internal web app to a SQL server.  We record customer, project, task, time on and time off.  I allow you to see the current day, week or pay period.  The colors are horrible.

Besides being really ugly, it works well enough.

Billy Boy
Thursday, August 5, 2004

Yes, I account for virtually every minute of the day, but that's because I'm self-employed and I've found that knowing where my time goes is hugely useful to improving my time management. And of course I use it for billing customers, project estimates, and the like.

Basically, I use Notepad to jot down start times, customer ids, and a job code or note. Then I have some Perl scripts I've cobbled together to help summarize and analyze (if I want to, I can dump the results into Excel and do the analytics there).

It's not fancy, but it's very lightweight, which means that I actually use it.

John C.
Thursday, August 5, 2004

I use AllNetic here as well. Easy to use, unobtrusive and does the job well.

Mark Hoffman
Thursday, August 5, 2004

We use a home-grown Access DB. It is not pretty nor elegant but it (sort of) works. It's also used for bug/change requests so basically it's a task log.

I'd be interested in a better method, too, so I'll watch this thread. :)

Captain McFly
Thursday, August 5, 2004

The cool thing about the Allnetic Working Time Tracker is it triggers itself if you're idle or active.

"You've gone idle, do you want to start/stop tracking your time?" And it sits in your systray, you just have to mouse over it & it pops up. Just select a project and hit start or stop. I can't tell you how many times I walked away from the computer and was thankful I could choose to either say I'd been working the entire time I was away, or say work on that project had stopped, and then know how much time I spent away too. Or come back to the computer and because it popped up (with the current time plugged in) and it reminded me to start tracking again.

You can have projects and sub projects, hidden projects, and stuff like that.

Then at the end of the day you have each project and down-to-the-second how much time you spent on it.

And if you have to, you can fudge the numbers so it fits the full 8 required.

I heard that the 2.0 version exports to CSV and XML. Really, I can't recommend it highly enough if you have to track your time.
Thursday, August 5, 2004

All but one of our divisions use a homegrown asp/sql server app.  The last division uses this hack job of a tcl app that I'm currently assigned to convert to asp.

Thursday, August 5, 2004

Yes, we use inhouse software that we created as well.  It's tightly integrated with our bug tracking system, so whenever you edit a bug report it logs you in and then it logs you out when you close it.

1/4 Ain't Bad
Thursday, August 5, 2004

I use TimeTech

Here's a list of ones I found while looking for allnetic (can't find the free trial of that one).

Thursday, August 5, 2004

"This is a fully functional demo version with a 30 days trial period."

Unless you're talking about the other software...
Thursday, August 5, 2004

This is the one I was looking for :

"I used the 1.x version (which was free). From what I hear, 2.x has more features, but you have to pay for it"

I only use a time tracker on occassion. Honestly for me paper is better b/c I usually jot down my time notes when my computer is busy processing something.

Thursday, August 5, 2004

Oh... Yeah they seem to have taken the 1x version down.

I used to jot things down on paper too, and I was surprised how far off my numbers were. That 5 minute job would turn out to be a half hour job once I tracked all the steps and not just the actual work involved, and that 3 solid hours would turn out to be 2 hours with a bunch of interruptions.
Thursday, August 5, 2004

I wrote my own tool.  Ditto for invoicing.
Thursday, August 5, 2004

If you put .LOG as the first line of a text document every time you open it in notepad or most other Windows text editors (just verified with Text Pad and Edit Pad, won't with Ultra Edit.) it get's time stamped.

Thursday, August 5, 2004

AllNetic 1.x

It's amazing how much time I spend on working with "Coding" these days...

It helps a lot.

Friday, August 6, 2004

Current office uses Open Air

Friday, August 6, 2004

I use at work.
Easy to use, and I have a perlscript that prepares weekly reports.
I find it very usefull to see how much time is spent on each project.

Fredrik Svensson
Saturday, August 7, 2004

Thanks for the pointer to Allnetic. I am trying out the Time Tracker 30 day demo, since we recently switched to more detailed time logging at work.

My problem is that I work on so many different things in a day, many of them only 5-10 minutes a pop (I am a Development Oracle DBA for a data warehouse) that I often get to the end of a 9-10 hour day and wonder what the heck I did all day, even though I have logged all the major tasks in TreePad.

Data Miner
Sunday, August 8, 2004

Treepad rocks, but it's not a time tracker.

I have a small program that will spit out the time every time you hit F2. You have to set it first because it defaults to 12:00:00, but you only have to do that once a day. You can grab it at

It won't collate & staple (so to speak) like the Allnettic WTT, but it's better than just Treepad, and it's free.
Sunday, August 8, 2004

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