bif-work - start or stop working a node


0.1.5_8 (yyyy-mm-dd)


bif work ID [START] [STOP] [OPTIONS...]


The bif-work command tracks and records work activity. Command actions include starting work, stopping work, cancelling work and defining whole blocks of work.

Starting Work

Work begins when a valid node ID (or PATH) is provided as the first argument.

$ bif work 34

The current time and an optional MESSAGE describing the work activity are saved in a temporary buffer. Starting work when you are already working a node is not an error. The current work item is saved before work begins on the new node.

$ bif work 35

You can set the start time manually with the START argument.

$ bif work 34 08:04

Stopping Work

To stop working use a single dash "-" as the ID (mnemonic: work "nothing"). You are prompted to describe the work activity just completed.

$ bif work -
Message: fixed the frobnicator

If a message was already provided when starting the work it is presented as the default. Similarly to starting work, the current time is used unless a date is given.

$ bif work - 09:30

Cancelling Work

The --cancel option can be used at any time to not record the currently worked activity. This takes effect even if you are starting something else while working another. Use with caution.

Recording Work

You can provide both a START and a STOP time together to completely define a block of work in one go:

$ bif work 34 08:30 09:40 -m 'Stuff happened'


The following restrictions apply:

Working Across Midnight

For reasons of efficiency when generating reports, work activity across midnight is internally split on that boundary and saved as multiple entries.

$ bif work 34 'yesterday 20:00' '08:00'

It is only documented here so that the user is not surprised by entries in reports that do not exactly match the work commands used.

Arguments & Options

One of the following:
A start (or stop time when ID is "-") in format "[YYYY-MM-DD[T]]HH:SS". Accepts the string "yesterday" in place of "YYYY-MM-DD".
Stop time in format "[YYYY-MM-DD[T]]HH:SS". Also accepts the string "yesterday" in place of "YYYY-MM-DD".
--cancel, -c
Stop the current work item without recording it. Only valid with an ID of "-".
--message, -m
Description of the work activity.

See Also

Timesheet-style reports are generated by the bif-show-work command and a project/billing report is generated by bif-list-worked. Time worked is also displayed by various "show" commands.


Mark Lawrence <>

Copyright And License

Copyright 2015-2017 Mark Lawrence <>

This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 3 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.