I would like to find, and ultimately use, a free software for managing my daily tasks. It could be a Windows or Web based utility, with the constraint that if it's a Windows application I'd like to easily export/import the list from/to different computers.

What I need is not an application that's packed with features I will not use. I just need to be able to add, edit and delete tasks. I would however like to be able to set the following for each task:

  • name
  • description
  • priority
  • status
  • deadline

It would be perfect if the tasks could be grouped into task-groups (i.e. projects) and/or if subtasks could also be defined.

4 Answers 4


A nice web-app for this is trello

For organising your tasks you can

  • Create tasks (called Cards in trello)
  • Create card-lists (groups of tasks)
  • Create boards (groups of card-lists)
  • Create organisations (groups of boards)
  • You can link directly to each card so sub-tasks could be implemented either as a link to the parent card or as checklists added directly to the card that needs to be divided into sub-tasks

As for your requirements for each task trello lets you add the following to cards

  • Add name
  • Add pictures
  • Add descriptions
  • Add labels (could be used for priority or grouping)
  • Add checklists
  • Add deadline
  • Add attachments from Google Drive, Dropbox, Box, OneDrive or your filesystem to tasks

Other nice things

  • It has a mobile app for iOS and Android.
  • You can invite people either to your organisations or to your boards
  • You can subscribe to tasks and see when they change
  • You can vote on tasks
  • You can comment on tasks
  • You can make boards public in a read-only fashion where only comments and voting is allowed
  • You can set it up so that you can create new tasks automatically by emailing your trello account
  • If you want to export your cards you can simply export them as JSON and do nice stuff with them
  • You don't have to delete cards once you finished the task but instead you can archive them and reuse them later
  • It is free and web-based
  • This seams to be the best app that matches my request. It's not so straight forward to use it (I'm still searching for the archived cards...) but I will do. Thank you.
    – Andrei V
    Commented Jun 13, 2014 at 7:58

I use Google Keep:

  • available as web-app or Chrome desktop application
  • set priority based on colors
  • sync your list across devices
  • set memento (as date or as location)
  • add image to an item
  • add list to each task
  • free
  • you need a Google account to use it
  • I gave it a try some time ago but couldn't get use to it. It's a nice app but I think it lacks features that are important to me (deadline -- the alarm is not my cup of tea -- and status -- cannot/will not use colors for both status and priority). I still follow its development though. Thank you for your suggestion.
    – Andrei V
    Commented Jun 13, 2014 at 7:54

Todo.txt (see also the related blog) is a "free" cross-platform "to-do" system based on a simple text file containing the various items. Since it's really just a text file, syncing between computers is fairly trivial.

The text file ("todo.txt") follows a certain set of conventions for recording the to-do item, for example (first minimal, then full):

contact independent auditor
(A) 2014-04-01 contact independent auditor t:2014-04-08 +Charity +financial @work @phone

That first line simply notes a task without any further information. Here is a breakdown of the second line:

  • (A) = the priority (top, in this case)
  • 2014-04-01 = date created
  • contact independent auditor = the task
  • t:2014-04-08 = "threshold" date (use with Schedule addon)
  • +Charity +financial = + marks the project, and multiple "projects" can be used
  • @work @phone = @ marks the "context", and multiple contexts can be used

Prepending an x to the start of the task marks it as "complete", like this:

x call Bob @home

There are a large number of apps for various platforms (including Windows, as described in this Lifehacker article) which act as GUI for the file, and allow you to manipulate it. Clearly, there is a whiff of the geek about this, as is plain to see.

In terms of the criteria sought for by OP:

  • add, edit, delete tasks Yes exactly how you do this depends on the app used to maintain your todo.txt file
  • name Yes Essentially, the name is the description (e.g., "Call Pat re: lunch"), but this can be combined with...
  • description Note either a "context" (think "tag"), or "project" (think "project")
  • priority Yes
  • status Note Only "not done" or "done" are available
  • deadline Note This is possible, although it requires the "Future Tasks" and "Schedule" addons (for "due dates" or "date thresholds")
  • "It would be perfect if the tasks could be grouped into task-groups" Yes the "context" feature caters especially for this item.

If this is of interest, the best thing to do would be to visit the links at the top of this post and explore.

  • 1
    Thank you for your suggestion. While I do like the idea of this whole thing, I don't really think it's easy to work with in my case. I gave it a try and I find it a bit difficult to manage the description and status. I will follow it further, though.
    – Andrei V
    Commented Jun 13, 2014 at 7:41


Quire is a "free" (see more below) to-do, productivity, task-list web app. It also allows for collaboration in projects.

  • Yes add, edit, delete tasks
  • Yes name - yes
  • Yes description - using Markdown, which is quite handy
  • Yes priority - four priorities are defined
  • Yes status - three status "to do", "in progress", "completed"
  • Yes deadline - by calendar
  • Yes task-groups (i.e. projects) - yes
  • Yes subtasks can be defined - yes.

+ tasks can have attachments
+ tasks can be "commented"
+ export to CSV or JSON
+ can integrate with calendar (e.g. Google) or Github

There are a number of useful features (like those listed with +, above), including statistical overview by status and deadline. The interface is very clean, simple, and intuitive (at least for me!):

basic screenshot

Pricing was mentioned as "free", above. This is the full statement from the Quire.io website:

Many people are asking us about pricing.

But, there are so much exciting ideas yet to be explored! We would rather focus on making Quire more awesome, than figuring which feature belong to which package.

At least until the fourth quarter of 2018.

In other words, Quire will be free for the time being.

And the good news is, whatever you are already using until then, will continue to be free.

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