How to install DeskTime on Fedora 28

Scully, you're not gonna believe this.

Posted by debuss-a on 30th Jul 2018

Fedora is a great operating system. I actually prefer it to Ubuntu that is too casual oriented in my taste even tho I've used it for quite some times.

But that is not the debate here...
A lot of software publishers offer a Linux version of their solutions, most of the time a .deb and .rpm version, maybe even the source files.
There are some case, mostly with proprietary solutions, where you only have at your disposal the .deb version, without even the source files. That is understandable...

I was struggling to get DeskTime on my Fedora as there is only a .deb version of the software for Linux users.

Here are the steps of how to get a .rpm of DeskTime and how to install it.

1. Install alien

alien is a tool that converts Linux package formats between different formats.
Please, note that alien author is no longer maintaining it so use it as a last resort.

sudo dnf install -y alien

2. Download DeskTime

Download the .deb package from DeskTime official download page : https://desktime.com/download.

3. Convert .deb to .rpm

Go in your Download folder.

cd ~/Download

Then use alen to convert the .deb file to an .rpm file, with root privileges.
(In my case, the .deb file name is desktime-linux_5.1.14_x64.deb).

sudo alien --to-rpm desktime-linux_5.1.14_x64.deb

Output :

desktime-linux-5.1.14-2.x86_64.rpm generated

4. Install DeskTime

If you try to install it the normal way, it will not work out and DeskTime won't install.

rpm -ivh desktime-linux-5.1.14-2.x86_64.rpm

That is because convertir a .deb file to .rpm is not something that easy. You probably will have error messages complaining about missing libraries or something.

Instead, use the same command line with a few more options :

rpm -ivh --nodeps --force desktime-linux-5.1.14-2.x86_64.rpm
  • --nodeps Don't do a dependency check before installing or upgrading a package.
  • --force
    • Install the packages even if some of them are already installed on this system.
    • Install the packages even if they replace files from other, already installed, packages.
    • Allow an upgrade to replace a newer package with an older one.

Congratulation ! DeskTime is now installed.

5. Launch DeskTime

Start DeskTime and a popup will ask you to reboot your computer. Do so, after the reboot you can then launch DeskTime, set up your account and start tracking your activities.

6. Tips

I noticed that with Wayland I was not able to right click on the DeskTime icon on the TopIcons Plus panel to enable Private Time or quit DeskTime.
To fix that issue, log out and login again in Xorg session, you can now right click on DeskTime icon.