KAlarm

Utilities

Source (link to git-repo or to original if based on someone elses unmodified work): Add the source-code for this project on opencode.net

1
7 .5
Description:

KAlarm is a personal alarm scheduler which displays messages, executes commands, plays sounds or sends emails, at scheduled times. You can set up recurring alarms, or restrict alarms to working hours. Among its options, it allows you to choose the message font and color, whether to display an advance reminder, whether to speak the message or play a sound when it is displayed, whether to cancel the alarm if it can't be triggered on time (e.g. if you are logged out when it triggers).

You can optionally use multiple alarm calendars, or share calendars. This allows, for example, sharing alarm calendars between laptops and desktop computers.

As well as using the graphical interface to configure alarms, you can use the command line, and there is a DCOP interface for other applications.

KAlarm is part of the official KDE kdepim package. The KAlarm version for KDE 4 downloadable from here is an update to the current KDE 4 release. The KDE 3 package is no longer supported; the last released KDE 3 version is functionally the same as the KDE 4 2.6.2 version, and offers considerable improvements compared to the version supplied with KDE 3.5.10.
Last changelog:

8 years ago

Version 2.9.0: This release adds a new option to execute a pre-alarm action before deferred alarms trigger, and new options to auto-hide the system tray icon when no alarms are due. The Try button in the audio alarm edit dialogue now toggles playback start and stop. There are other minor improvements and bug fixes. It includes a new Catalan translation of the handbook.

Maxilys

14 years ago

I love KAlarm. I couldn't live without it in the systray... but every time I see it, my eyes are bleeding.

I'm working on a style and it definitively doesn't like the spin widgets cut into pieces. The result is ugly. Couldn't you just use 2 spin widgets instead of a complete one and only the arrows of a second one? (Well, this is a detail that strikes me because I'm spending so much time with a magnifier over widgets.)

On the other hand, something that you should do IMHO is clean up the alarm dialog. I remember that the first time I tried to set an alarm, I just gave up because I couldn't figure out where to start in the jungle of widgets.

IMHO, it should follow a simple path: when, what and the rest. The most important thing about an alarm clock is the moment it will ring. That should be the first thing in the dialog. The way it will "ring" (text, sound, whatever) comes in second. And the rest shouldn't be that much in plain view since it's not the most important part.

I'm not an expert in usability but I was thinking that putting the time or delay on top of the dialog and all the rest in tabs below could be a track to follow. This way, you set the "when", you choose your "what" in the corresponding tab which contain all the related options. (I noticed a kind of redundancy in KAlarm's dialogs.) The "rest" is on dedicated tabs that you can ignore or use as needed and not always under your nose. That should make it easier for a user to find his way in the jungle of widgets.

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suslik

14 years ago

I would agree somewhat that the "new alarm" window is a bit busy, however, the current flow of

1. What to do
2. When to do it.
3. Repetition options

Is much more preferable from the multi-tasking point of view.

The only piece of info that is important for "reminder" type of alarms is - The notification of what to do. That is the only piece of information I have to keep in my brain. I would like to commit it to paper / text entry box while I still remember it, and clear the area of the brain immediately after.

"When to do it" is a logical outflow of the 1st step and does not require memory. Having the task on "paper" actually helps in deciding on the time and reminder options.

So, I would lean on the side of keeping the flow same, and on the same page

About the "busyness" of the interface: throw it out on kde-usability list. There are lots of eyes there. They'll figure something out.

(Example: reminder option relates more to the "time", than to "action" section.)

CC: Kalarm developers

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djarvie

14 years ago

I've been thinking about this, and I tend to agree that WHAT is to be done is the first thing, followed by WHEN. Your point about the reminder being related to the time is, I think, a valid one. The reason it is in the action section is that I have kept all controls which are common to all types of action in the same position in the tabs. Since reminder only applies to message and file actions, it has been put in the action section. But perhaps this isn't really logical from a user's point of view.

I'll try putting it to the KDE usability list, and see what comes of that.

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djarvie

14 years ago

The time entry spin boxes with two pairs of spin buttons ARE implemented using 2 separate spin boxes, with all but the arrows hidden in one of them.

Your comments about the alarm dialog layout are interesting. I'll try out putting the time at the top. The alarm type with associated configuration is already effectively in tabs (When you select a different alarm type, a different set of data entry widgets shows.) But I can't see an obvious way to reduce the number of widgets on show without making them more inaccessible, although I agree that simplification of the dialog would be desirable. I don't really understand what you're proposing in this respect. Can you please explain in more detail?

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Maxilys

14 years ago

About the spin widgets, it doesn't matter how the hack is implemented, it remains a hack and not a so pretty one IMHO. 2 spin widgets instead of one and a half would look much cleaner.

Now, let's try to make clear what I meant about the tabs. A picture being worth a thousand words, here it is:

http://home.tele2.fr/mxls/archives/KAlarm.mockup.png

That should be much clearer this way.

(This is just a quick mockup, don't ask for the ui file.)

You can only see the text tab but you get the general idea. A lot of options are hidden but it doesn't matter. You only see the ones you need when you need them.

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gohanz

14 years ago

Kalarm install a directory /libical at same level of the main Linux directory like /usr /etc /opt etc..
It's possible tu install this directory on a subdirectory like /usr/lib?

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djarvie

14 years ago

Now fixed in version 1.3.7.

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djarvie

14 years ago

That is a mistake - thanks for pointing it out. It should get installed under the KDE installation directory, in share/apps/kalarm. I'll fix it for the next release.

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ard

14 years ago

Kalarm used to have a repeat option for sound files; what it did was to keep playing the sound till the reminder window is closed. I use kalarm mainly as an alarm clock and the repeat option keeps the sound playing till i wake up. Why is it removed in the latest version of kalarm? Is there any alternative for repeating the sound file continuously?

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djarvie

14 years ago

I've had other reports of this problem from people running SUSE 10. I think that what is wrong is that SUSE have compiled KAlarm to not use the aRts sound server (i.e. specifying the WITHOUT_ARTS compile option). In that case, I'm afraid that the only solution is either to find a package which has been compiled to use aRts, or to recompile KAlarm from source. It might be a good idea to report this problem to SUSE.

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ard

14 years ago

Thanks a lot for pointing this out. I compiled from source and its working fine now. Keep up the great work :)

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djarvie

14 years ago

It still does have a repeat sound option, accessible when you click the sound file selection icon.

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ard

14 years ago

Well I still cant see it :(
I installed it through the following rpm which is the latest one installed by apt:
kdepim3-time-management_3.5.0-5_i586.rpm
on Suse 10 with KDE 3.5
Plz suggest me something.....

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djarvie

14 years ago

I assume that you are running KAlarm version 1.3 or higher. When you select Sound in the Edit Alarm dialog and then select File and if necessary click the sound file selection icon, you should see a dialog entitled "Sound File - KAlarm". There is a Repeat checkbox in that dialog.

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michals

15 years ago

It shound make use of cron. It should be running during time i am logout of my comp.
The abilities of making remindings has also knotes.

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djarvie

15 years ago

Cron doesn't provide the flexibility required for recurrences, so it simply isn't practical.

KAlarm isn't designed to take the place of cron. So if you want to schedule tasks when you aren't logged in, use cron instead.

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neokin

15 years ago

I was wondering if perchance you could add a snooze button to the message window? You see I use it for an alarm clock and would like to have a single click snooze button rather than manually setting differ value each time or if you could allow the user to choose weather or not they wanted a snooze button or differ or both?

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djarvie

15 years ago

Sorry, I misunderstood what you said. But with a Snooze button, wouldn't you need to be able to select how long to snooze for? If so, it's really no different from using the Defer button along with selecting a value in "Defer for time interval".

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djarvie

15 years ago

Doesn't the Defer button do what you want?

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google01103

15 years ago

/usr/lib/libartsflow.so: undefined reference to `g_assert_warning'
/usr/lib/libartsflow.so: undefined reference to `g_return_if_fail_warning

resolved by rebuilding arts from source rpm. Something to do with my running gnome 2.6

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djarvie

15 years ago

This is a problem several people have reported with SUSE 9.1 and 9.2. The SUSE arts package seems to be modified from the standard KDE source - these missing 'functions' are defined as macros in KDE, so would never produce these error messages. I hope SUSE will fix this sometime.

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google01103

15 years ago

while compiling Version: 1.3.0b1

index.docbook:1347: element action: validity error : Element link is not declared in action list of possible children
edit dialog to create a new alarm.
^
index.docbook:1356: element action: validity error : Element link is not declared in action list of possible children
details.
^
make[3]: *** [index.cache.bz2] Error 1
make[2]: *** [all-recursive] Error 1
make[1]: *** [all-recursive] Error 1
make: *** [all] Error 2

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google01103

15 years ago

while compiling Version: 1.3.0b1

index.docbook:1347: element action: validity error : Element link is not declared in action list of possible children
edit dialog to create a new alarm.
^
index.docbook:1356: element action: validity error : Element link is not declared in action list of possible children
details.
^
make[3]: *** [index.cache.bz2] Error 1
make[2]: *** [all-recursive] Error 1
make[1]: *** [all-recursive] Error 1
make: *** [all] Error 2

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djarvie

15 years ago

This has been fixed in version 1.3.0 beta 2.

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nigels

15 years ago

My wish-list item would be to have a "run in terminal" option, rather than needing to put "xterm -e" in front of my backup command lines.

It would also be kindof nice to edit an entire shell script, rather than needing to point to an external one.

KAlarm is serving me well as a GUI-oriented alternative to cron, but it would be nice to have the command output at hand, especially for debugging.

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8 years ago

Version 2.9.0: This release adds a new option to execute a pre-alarm action before deferred alarms trigger, and new options to auto-hide the system tray icon when no alarms are due. The Try button in the audio alarm edit dialogue now toggles playback start and stop. There are other minor improvements and bug fixes. It includes a new Catalan translation of the handbook.

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remix
Apr 03 2012
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