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I’ve been around computers my entire life (well almost). As far back as the early days of mini-machines (which is before the computer became Personal). And sometimes I re-discover “old ways” of doing things, which often to my surprise are still working. To stroll down memory-lane (just a tad) I started off a new sub-topic yesterday, called: “OldSchool-Quick-Tip”. But let’s get down to business…

How to use Notepad as your Work Log

  1. Open Notepad (or, create a new blank text-file)
  2. In the first line, type this: “.LOG” (without the quotes, and in UPPERcase)
  3. Save the document, and close it.
  4. Double-Click the Text file-icon to open the file again.
    Notice how Notepad has added the time-stamp to a new line, awaiting your entry.
  5. Type something, save and close the document.
    Each time you open the file, Notepad repeats the process, appending the time and date to the end of the file and placing the cursor below it.

Notepad does actually have much more functionality than just “quick notes”. I’ll bring you more Notepad tricks later on.

About Thomas

Computer geek from the age of 7, which amounts to 30 years of computer experience. From the early days (when every computer company had their own OS) of DOS, Windows 1.0 through Seven...

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  • http://twitter.com/cisoxp TarcĂ­sio Cavalcante

    Cool. I use this tip, but without a .LOG file. I’ve just press F5 when I want the date and time.

    • Anonymous

      Yes it is true. I forgot to mention this in the article.
      Thank you for reminding me.

      • Compternerd

        I don’t know if anyone mentioned it, but the way we used to use it was by just putting a shortcut in the START folder, then every time your computer was started it would log the date and time. If someone else logged on your computer you would see an extra date and time. I’m sure there are more complicated ways to do more complicated stuff with it.

  • Alan Douglas

    Great feature! It also works with Notepad++. Who knew?

    • http://richr.org/ Rich

      Thanks for sharing :)

    • DD

      no.. it’s not :(

  • http://www.greggdeselms.com/ Gregg L. DesElms

    I already knew about this, but good tip anyway.

    I see that someone else beat me to pointing out, though, that pressing F5 inserts it.

    And yet another poster beat me to that Notepad++ also does this.

    The old METAPAD (http://liquidninja.com/metapad/) also inserts date/time, in both long and short format, by pressing either the F6 or F7 keys (depending on which version one likes).

    The only reason why the .LOG method might not be better is that if one wishes to make a second log entry in the same notepad session, then one is going to have to use F5 anyway; so, given that, why not just forget the .LOG method and always use F5? Just a thought.

  • http://twitter.com/lautomne M.T

    this is neat & useful tip! thanks!

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