I'm looking for a GUI utility which you can use to set a timer to go off after a fixed amount of time. When it goes off there some sort of strong visual notification.

Required features:

  • Works on Linux
  • Works on x86_64 machines
  • Works with X windows
  • Gratis
  • Small size
  • Uses very little system resources

Desired features:

  • Ability to set a message which pops up when the time is up
  • Audio notification in addition to the visual one
  • Option for "XYZ minutes left" notifications
  • Taskbar indicator for amount of time left
  • Allows setting an alarm for a fixed date and time rather than a timer for an interval
  • Stopwatch
  • Libre software
  • Not too ugly or tacky (I know this is subjective)
  • Can match desktop environment theme
  • If you like minimalism, you may also like yapomo. Disclaimer, I'm the author.
    – progmatico
    Oct 16, 2023 at 13:32
  • @progmatico: Could you make that comment into an answer, and describe which of the requested features this provides? And what's special/particularly attractive about it?
    – einpoklum
    Oct 16, 2023 at 21:44

3 Answers 3


If you're using XFCE4, there's a panel plugin which has this functionality - sort of. It's for taking "breaks" every fixed amount of time. So if you want to wait XYZ minutes, set the time between breaksk to XYZ, set the break time to whatever you like, then reset the timer.

You'll now have a taskbar timer counting back to 0 from XYZ, and when reaching 0 it will bring up a message (albeit not the one you may have wanted).


Alarm Clock runs on the Openbox window manager, among others:

Alarm Clock is a fully-featured alarm clock for your GNOME panel or equivalent. It's easy to use yet powerful with support for multiple repeatable alarms, as well as snoozing and a flexible notification system.

Among its features:

Alarm Clock will notify you of an alarm by either playing a sound or starting your favorite music player! You can of course specify which sound you would like to use and whether it should be repeated or not. It’s also possible to specify a custom command to run instead of the pre-defined media players.

A notification bubble will appear when an alarm goes off, just in case you missed the sound.


If you like minimalism, you may also like yapomo. Disclaimer, I'm the author.

It really is minimal and stays out of your way. It covers all your required features, and almost none of your desired ones. It only counts down from 25 minutes (although it is trivial to change this to other interval in the Python code), then flashes the counter accumulator to grab your attention. You restart manually with a click, so you are free to take so much break from the work as you need. I use it for myself, usually on top of the other windows. If you are a Python user you can also pip install yapomo. It can be paused with a click and it has a right-click menu to reset the counter.

It is really small and simple and should stay mostly like that, although I can consider little enhancements if users show much interest. It is free software (GPLv3+)

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