|Install the current version of Simple Timer (from AMO)|
|Install older versions of Simple Timer (from AMO)|
Change log for latest version Simple
(June 30, 2010)
- Support for Thunderbird, minimum version 3.0b3
- Display paused countup/downs with red text
- Use user-defined date in statusbar/toolbar tooltips
when display is set to both statusbar and toolbar, icon image
color not synched after Notify Me At notification completes
In Options, repeat audio elements should be disabled unless both
audio and dialog alerts enabled
What can Simple Timer do?
Various clock and timer functions, including:
- display your local clock
- count up from zero
- count down from any time (less than 24 hours). You can set as many timers as you want
- receive notifications at specific times of the day (either as one time only or daily or on specific days of the week). You can set as many notifications as you want
in an event log
Downloading this extension places a blue alarm clock icon in your statusbar. You can drag and drop the icon anywhere upon the statusbar. Features are available via a context menu (right-click on icon).
Lets examine each menu item in detail
the time in the format and language (ie. AM/PM) of your locale. In the
Options dialog you can toggle on/off the seconds portion of the
display, and you can choose to use the 24 hour format if you are in a
locale that normally uses a 12 hour clock. Or you can choose to display
an Epoch clock, which displays
1, 1970 GMT 0:00.
is also an option to
append a formatted date to the display. Middle-click displays the
icon again. Why would you want a clock when Windows, for example,
displays a clock in the taskbar? Some people like to hide their
This will display the Notify Me At This Time dialog where you can set a specific time of day to receive a notification. Lets see what it looks like.
you can see, the upper half "Enter Notification" is where you supply
the notification info, while the lower half is a table of existing
notifications. You can enter as many notifications as you like.
The fields are:
Description -- an optional field which is displayed when your notification completes (assuming you have enabled a visual alert in the Options dialog), and in the Full tooltip (also enabled in Options dialog).
URL -- an optional field. Click on Bookmark (this feature not available in Thunderbird), to the right of the textbox, to copy your browsers current webpage URL into the textbox. This little bookmarking feature allows you to display a webpage upon completion of the notification. If you have enabled dialog alert in Options dialog, this URL is displayed in the Notification Completed dialog, and clicking on the "Open URL" button will open the associated webpage in a new tab. If instead you have enabled audio and/or popup alert in Options dialog, the webpage is opened in a new tab automatically. In the image above, at 10:00 PM an ebay webpage will be opened when I hope to sneak in a last-minute bid.
-- a mandatory field which indicates when the notification is issued.
This field will originally show the time when you opened the dialog, in
the language and format of your locale. Click on the hours, minutes
(and AM/PM if shown) subfields to edit them, using the spin buttons or
your keyboard's up and down arrows.
You can set multiple notifications for the same time (for instance, have them open different web pages via Bookmark), but a warning dialog is displayed, and the duplicate entries are highlighted in the table.
You can also set notifications for the same time, but different days (no warning dialog in this case).
Recurring -- an optional field. If left unchecked, this notification is one-time only. If checked, this notification will repeat, as indicated by the value of the dropdown box to the immediate right. You can set a value of Daily, Weekdays (Monday-Friday), Weekends (Saturday-Sunday) or a specific day of the week.
Now you are ready to enter your notification. If you are just entering one notification and don't care to see it entered in the Notifications table, you can click Add/OK button, which adds the notification and dismisses the dialog. If you are going to enter another notification, or just want to see it in the table, click the Add button to the left of the table.
Note that when
Notify Me At This Time dialog, any existing notifications are displayed
in the Notifications table.
Editing notifications in the Notifications table:
this deletes it.
- Del All button -- deletes all notifications.
- Reset button -- restores the table to the state it was in when opening the dialog.
- Clicking the Recurring column of the table toggles this field (checkmark) on/off. This also affects the Day column: when Recurring is toggled off, Day becomes blank, when toggled on, Day assumes a value of Daily.
- Double-clicking any of the other fields allows complete editing by moving the notification info back to the upper-half (Enter Notification) of the dialog. Make your desired edits up there, then click Replace (the label on the Add button changes to Replace during a double-click edit) to replace the notification in the table.
and pending, the alarm clock icon in the statusbar (when displayed)
will be red instead of blue.
a count up from zero in the statusbar. Hours, minutes and seconds are
displayed. If you left-click the display, the count is paused. Another
left-click resumes the count. Middle-click stops the count and displays
the alarm clock icon in the statusbar. If you are using the Full
tooltip (see Options) the completed time of the last count up is
This displays the Countdown Time Entry dialog, lets look...
you can see, the upper half "Enter Countdown" is where you supply
the countdown info, while the lower half is a table of existing
countdown timers. You can set as many timers as you like.
The fields are:
-- an optional field which is displayed when your countdown
completes (assuming you have enabled a visual alert in the Options
dialog), and in the Full tooltip (also enabled in Options dialog).
hrs, mins, and
your countdown time (less
than 24 hours). Use the spin buttons or your keyboard's up/down arrows
to set the values.
Recurring - if
checkbox is ticked, the countdown will continually restart
Now you are ready to enter your countdown timer. If you are just entering one timer and don't care to see it entered in the Countdown Timers table, you can click Add/OK button, which adds the timer and dismisses the dialog. If you are going to enter another timer, or just want to see it in the table, click the Add button to the left of the table.Note that when opening the Countdown Timer Entry dialog, any existing timers are displayed in the Countdown Timers table.
Editing timers in the Countdown Timers table:
- Delete button -- after selecting a timer in the table, this deletes it.
- Del All button -- deletes all timers.
- Reset button -- restores the table to the state it was in when opening the dialog.
- clicking the Recurring column of the table toggles this field (checkmark) on/off.
- double-clicking the Description column of the table allows you to edit. Change focus ( ie. click elsewhere in the dialog) to apply the edit.
If you have a frequently used list of timers, you can save the list (shown in the Countdown Timers table) by clicking the Save List button. You can then load the list at a later time using the Load List button.
Clicking OK or Add/Ok starts the countdown in the statusbar. The timer which will expire the soonest is displayed in the statusbar. If you have set multiple timers, you can see the current time remaining for them if the appropriate tooltip option was selected (see Options below).
Left-click the statusbar display to pause the countdown, another left-click resumes the countdown (this can be disabled in Options), while middle-click stops the countdown. This only affects the timer that is displayed in the statusbar. If you have other timers set, they are not affected.
If timers are running when you close your browser, they will be automatically restarted when you next open your browser. It will appear as if the timers were running while your browser was closed. You also get a slider alert when reopening your browser, reporting the status of these timers.
The alert you receive when the countdown is completed is set by you in Options.
resumes a count up or countdown. Same as
left-clicking the time in the statusbar. Note that
disabling the pause/resume function via left-click on statusbar display
(in Options) does not affect this menu item.
a count up, countdown or clock and displays the alarm clock icon in the
statusbar. Same as middle-clicking the time in the statusbar.
Kill Audio Alarm (.ogg)
This item is disabled unless playback of an .ogg audio
alarm is in progress. This will stop the playback. Note that if you
have enabled dialog notification (see Options->Notifications),
closing that dialog when it appears will automatically stop any audio
This opens a dialog titled Preferences. There are four tabs, the first is Notifications.
In Notification Options, you can define what type of alert to receive when a countdown or notification completes.
you check "Enable audio notification", the dialog expands to allow you
choose an audio file to play when the timer completes. You can choose
one of the preset audio files, or choose
your own custom file. Click on Browse (when Custom is selected)
to search your file system. You can use a .wav file or (if you use
Firefox 3.5 or better) an .ogg (Ogg Vorbis) file. The .wav file should
not be more than a few seconds in duration to play reliably, but an
.ogg file can be of any length. Convert your favorite .mp3 to .ogg
format and give it a try!
You can preview the audio files by clicking on the listen icon beside each file.
You have two visual alert options, you can select both if you like but probably you will want only one.
If you check "Enable popup notification", the alert will be a small window that slides up from the bottom of the screen, holds there for a few seconds, then slides down.
If you check "Enable dialog notification", the alert will be a small dialog that appears in the center of the screen. This option has the ability to repeat the audio alarm (if enabled) at intervals you can select, up to n times (you select n). If you don't want to repeat the audio alarm leave n set to 0. This option can be useful if you may be away from the computer and you don't want to miss the alert. Note that the interval can be positive or negative. A positive value indicates an interval in minutes, while a negative value indicates an interval in seconds. In the image above, I have set an interval of 3 seconds. This short interval will have the audio alarm simulate a digital clock alarm, repeating every 3 seconds up to 49 times. You should use a very short custom .wav file in conjunction with such a short interval.
If you want to repeat a long .ogg audio alarm, just set
some small interval like 1 second (-1).
If more than one timer expires, you will see
multiple dialogs displayed, but only one repeating audio alarm for all
of them. Closing a (the) dialog stops the audio alarm.
The completion time is displayed in the titlebar of the dialog.
The second tab of the Preferences dialog is Positioning.
You can display the
icon/timer/clock in the statusbar (default), toolbar or both (just for
fun!). Statusbar drag
and drop is supported.
Most themes (including the default) will show a vertical red line between statusbar panels, while dragging, to show where the drop will occur if you release the mouse at that time.
To use the toolbar display, select Toolbar here. Then, if this is your first time selecting this, you must drag the SimpleTimer toolbar button (blue alarm clock) from the toolbar button palette to the toolbar. You can use the navigation or bookmarks toolbar. To open the palette, right-click the toolbar and select Customize...
The third tab of the Preferences dialog is Clock.
Set how you want to display the clock on your statusbar/toolbar. There are three sections to this tab:
- Clock Display section contains a format dropdown with items to indicate the order that the time and/or date appear on your statusbar/toolbar, as well as delimiters between them. Note if you choose the "Time" item (ie. no date), the Date section of this tab becomes disabled, with a special message appearing in Preview textbox at the bottom.
- Time section allows customization of the time portion of your clock display. If you are in a 12 hour clock locale, you can choose to display the clock in 24 hour format. You wont see this option if you live in a 24 hour clock locale. You can also toggle on/off the seconds portion of the clock display. Or you can choose to display an Epoch clock, which displays the number of seconds since Jan 1, 1970 GMT 0:00.
- Date section allows customization of the date portion of your clock display. You can choose a preset format, or design your own custom format:
- Preset formats -- choose a preset date format from the dropdown box, and click Insert (to the right). Whatever is in the date Format textbox below is replaced by date format symbols representing this format. The symbols are enclosed in square brackets, and represent a format for a specific part of the date, eg. [w1] is weekday (full), [w2] is weekday (abbreviated). Similarly, [m1] - [m5] represent different month formats, [d1] - [d5] different day formats and [y1] - [y2] different year formats (These symbols can be seen in the Custom dropdowns also). The symbols are then converted to a preview of your format, seen in the Preview textbox. Note the date Format textbox is directly editable, so you can add text, punctuation spacing etc. outside of the [...] symbols. Also, if the date Format textbox becomes empty or contains only whitespace, a warning message is displayed in the Preview textbox (in red text) and the OK button is disabled (no OK button on Mac OS X!).
- Custom format -- build your own format by selecting
items from the Weekday, Month, Day, Year and Separators dropdowns, and
clicking Insert (to the right). The symbol for that format is inserted
at the carat position of the date Format textbox (not necessarily the
end) and the date Preview textbox is updated. Manual editing of the
date Format textbox is again allowed. Note there is an Undo button to
the right of the Format textbox, which removes your last edit. There
are 2 special symbols which are mainly for the benefit of some Asian
locales, [w3 (1,*)] and [m3 (1,*)]. These select substrings of the
weekday and month strings, (n,m) where n is the first character and m
is the last (inclusive). The special symbol * as the last char means
select "to the end of the string". Also negative numbers are relative
to the end of the string, with -1 being the last char, -2 is the second
last etc. As an example, with a weekday of "Tuesday", [w3 (1,2)] will
select "Tu" while [w3 (-3,*)] will select "day". Ok, here is a test
question to see if you were paying attention: How could you exclude the
last two characters of the weekday?
The fourth tab of the Preferences dialog is Miscellaneous.
Startup Options -- Select the function to perform
automatically at startup.
Event Logging --
checkbox to enable logging of
completed count ups, count downs, and
The text box will contain the path to a default log file, which is in
the SimpleTimer folder within your Firefox profile folder. If you
would like to use a different folder, then click the
Browse... button to navigate to, then select, your folder. A file
"eventLog.txt" will be created in that folder. The log is a text file
encoded as UTF-8. If you want to revert back to the default file, just
click the "Reset Default" button. Finally, you can select
the number of days to retain a logged
item, from 0 to 90 days. A value of zero means do not perform automatic
Left-click on Icon Action -- Define the action to take when left-clicking on the alarm clock icon.
Pause/Resume -- tick the checkbox to
Pause/Resume, by left-click on statusbar display, of countup/countdown.
Pause/Resume still functions via context menu.
Tooltip Options -- Choose the type of tooltip to display. The "Full" option will display the date, notifications pending, countdown timers, elapsed time of your current browser session, and the elapsed time of your last Count Up. The "Date only, with clock only" option will display a date tooltip only when the clock is displayed. Date is displayed in the language and format of your locale.
Displays the Event log dialog, lets see...
The event log contains data about your
completed count ups, count downs, and notifications. You can change the
dimensions of the dialog by dragging
its edges. You can also change the width of the tree columns by dragging the little seperators between
headings. In the upper-right position of the column headings is a
small image, which is a column picker. Click on it to
display a drop-down list of the tree columns. Use this to hide/show individual tree columns. All of this is
"remembered" the next
time you open the dialog. If you have set a non-zero value for"Delete
log entries after n days" (see Options... above) , entries that meet
this criteria are automatically deleted from your log file (this clean
up processing occurs when you open the event log dialog). You can also
clear the entire log by clicking the "Clear log" button.
A Status value of "Expired" indicates that this one-time notification or count down "completed" while your browser was closed.
Values of "N/A" means this column is not applicable to this event type.
Visit Home Page
Links to this webpage.
DocumentationA submenu with links to specific topics within this webpage.
The About menu
two tabs, a Credits tab and a Changelog tab
(where you can quickly see the changes made to the latest version).
Contact me at email@example.com
with any comments