Igniting productivity with open source time tracking (2024)

open source time tracking
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In the relentless pursuit of maximizing productivity, businesses and individuals alike are constantly seeking innovative solutions to streamline their workflows. And to help you out we came up with “Igniting Productivity with Open Source Time Tracking”. In this blog, we will immerse in the transformative world of time management. Not only that we will be unveiling the potential of open-source solutions to redefine efficiency.

As the digital landscape evolves, the demand for transparent, collaborative, and customizable tools becomes paramount. This comprehensive exploration delves into the principles, benefits, and considerations of open source time tracking. It further lays the foundation for a profound understanding of how these tools can reshape the way we approach time.

What is open source time tracking

Open source time tracking means time tracking software that is developed and distributed with an open source license. In the context of software, “open source” means that the source code of the application is freely available. Such tools provide users with the flexibility to customize the software. It helps them to suit their specific needs, contributing to a collaborative and transparent development environment.

These tools are often developed and maintained by a community of volunteers or organizations, allowing for continuous improvement and innovation. Curios to know more? Dive in and keep reading as we discuss more.

How to consider if a platform is open source time tracker

To determine if a platform is an open source time tracker, there are several key factors to consider. Firstly, check the licensing information associated with the software.

Such tools typically use licenses such as the GNU General Public License (GPL) or the Apache License, which grant users the right to access, modify, and distribute the source code.

Additionally, the project’s repository on platforms like GitHub or GitLab can provide insights into the development activity, community engagement, and overall health of the project. A vibrant and active community, regular updates, and a transparent development process are indicators of a robust platform.

Three open source time tracking software

But you may ask what are the best open source time tracking software that can be considered for using. Well, keep reading as we list down!


TypeOpen-source time-tracking tool
OverviewCattr is a solution for efficient employee time tracking, seamlessly integrating with existing infrastructure. Features like screenshot capture and automatic activity detection enhance productivity monitoring. Designed to eliminate manual time tracking for improved team performance.
Key FeaturesOpen Source: Community version available for free, promoting transparency and collaboration. Under the SSPL license, ensuring it remains free and open source. Activity Tracking: Provides insight into individual/team focus, aiding productivity by identifying areas for improvement or potential distractions. On-Premises: Securely stores private data within a company’s infrastructure, ensuring compliance with data protection regulations and offering control over server management and customization. Extensions: Allows further customization through community plugins or creating custom extensions, enhancing flexibility to fit specific company needs.


TypeFree Open Source Time Tracking Software
Launch Year2006
OverviewKimai provides an efficient and reliable time tracking solution with a long history of consistent maintenance and improvements. It supports an unlimited number of users and timesheet entries, with a responsive design for easy mobile access. Ideal for both personal and business use.
Key FeaturesMobile Readiness: Responsive design adaptable to any device. Users can customize displayed data columns for better mobile experience. Plugins: Allows extended functionality through easily integrated plugins. Multi-User: No user limit, each with assigned roles and permissions. Multi-Language: Available in 30+ languages for global usage. Teams: Organize users into teams for better collaboration and organization.
BenefitsNo licensing fees or restrictions. Community of developers for constant improvement Greater security due to open source nature.
open source time tracking


TypeProject management software
OverviewOpenProject is a versatile project management software designed to keep teams organized and on track with their projects. It includes features such as manual time tracking, Gantt chart module, productivity reporting, agile methodology support, and employee scheduling capabilities. It streamlines team workflows and boosts overall efficiency.
Key FeaturesManual Time Tracking: Easily log specific hours worked on each project/task for accurate record-keeping, billing, and productivity analysis. Customized Hourly Rates: Assign different hourly rates for team members, projects, and time frames for precise cost reporting, budgeting, and project planning. Expense Tracking: Keep track of project/task-related costs for overall cost analysis and reporting. Productivity Reports: Exportable in CSV format, facilitating integration with other systems and sharing with clients or team members for improved communication and collaboration.
Premium FeaturesBoards: Available in both cloud and on-premises Enterprise editions, enhancing project management and collaboration efforts within teams. Trial License: For those hosting the software on their server, a free 14-day trial license is available for testing the on-premises Enterprise edition before purchasing.
open source time tracking

Features of commercial vs. open source time tracking software

But you may ask, what makes such platforms different from commercial time tracking software. And to help you out with that, we have a section showcasing the difference between commercial and open source time tracking.

FeaturesCommercial Time Tracking SoftwareOpen Source Time Tracking Software
CostTypically involves monetary investment (one-time payment or subscription fees)Free to use and distribute, publicly available code
Features and InterfaceMay have more advanced features and a polished interfaceMay have limited features
Support and UpdatesIncludes access to support and regular updatesSupport may be limited or entirely community-based
Data OwnershipCompany owns the data collectedUser maintains ownership of their data
CustomizationMay limit customization; higher costs for updates/upgradesProvides flexibility and customizability through code modifications

If you are looking into commercial platforms then you can definitely look into Tackle that can make your time tracking effortless for your team.

Try the Tackle app. It’s free, forever!

Pros and cons of open source time tracking software

Now that we know the difference between open source time tracking and commercial source of time tracking, let’s dive into the pros and cons of it.

Cost-EffectivenessLow Quality
Range of Features and Quality UpdatesProblems with Maintenance
Increased SecuritySelf-Hosting
Customization OptionsLack of Customer Support
Community SupportSecurity Risks

Why choose Tackle over open source time tracking

open source time tracking

After judging the pros and cons, we thought why not focus on a section where you get to see that while open source time tracking is good, Tackle as a time tracker is better! Keep reading to see for yourself:

FeaturesTackle Time Tracking SoftwareOpen Source Time Tracking Software
CostCommercial product with pricing plans and enterprise-level featuresFree to use, but potential hidden costs for customization
Ease of UseStreamlined and user-friendly interfaceVaries; may require more technical expertise
IntegrationDeep integration with Google and Outlook calendarsRelies on community-developed integrations
AutomationAutomated tagging, notifications, and data exportAutomation capabilities may vary
CustomizationHighly customizable to fit unique business needsCustomization limited to coding skills and community support
Customer SupportAccess to dedicated customer supportRelies on community support
SecurityCertified by industry-leading third-party standardsSecurity risks may arise from open source code access
Analytics and ReportingRobust analytics with beautiful charts and user-friendly interfaceLimited reporting features; may require additional tools
Built-in Productivity InsightsIn-depth insights from various data sources, aiding workforce optimizationLimited or no built-in productivity insights
Workflow BuilderIntuitive workflow builder for automation of repetitive processesLimited or no built-in workflow customization

Try the Tackle app. It’s free, forever!

Wrapping up!

We hope you were able to embark on a transformative journey into the world of open-source time tracking, where transparency, collaboration, and customization converge to elevate productivity.

💡 Tackle Pro Tip
Now that you have read about open source time tracking, we thought you would be interested in other articles such as:

Frequently Asked Questions

Which is the best time tracking software?

Choosing the best time tracking software depends on individual needs. Options like Cattr, Kimai, and OpenProject, or commercial solutions like Tackle, offer robust features. Assess based on customization, integration, and ease of use.

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Maximize potential: Tackle’s automated time tracking & insights

Maximize potential: Tackle’s automated time tracking & insights