Do you use Microsoft Tasks to manage your tasks on your Windows smartphone and laptop. Would you like to do the same on your main Linux desktop? With Ao you can! Let’s see how you can manage your Microsoft tasks from your Linux desktop.
Ao is available on multiple platforms. If you are on Linux the easiest way to get the latest version is to use snap:
Interestingly, in Ubuntu comes with built-in snap support by default, and you can find Ao’s snap in Ubuntu Software among other “productivity” apps.
If you don’t like Snapcraft and are using an Arch, Red Hat, or Debian compatible distribution or prefer AppImage, you can find Ao packages on GitHub. After downloading the package for your distribution, install it as you would any other package. For example, on Debian, you would need to enter a terminal something like:
On Ao’s Github page, you’ll also find versions for Mac and Windows. We’re not sure how many people would prefer it to the official Microsoft app which is natively available on both platforms, especially since Ao doesn’t drastically change or upgrade its features.
to log in
Ao is a wrapper for Microsoft’s online version of To-Do. To use it, you must be online and have an Outlook or Skype account. The first thing Ao will do after execution is to request these login credentials. We will not go through signing up for Microsoft’s services and will move on to the app itself.
Like the real thing
Microsoft’s To-Do works in Ao exactly the same way you would expect the web app to work just because it’s the web app.
On the left you have a sidebar with all your task categories. At the top, you can see some predefined categories that help you better manage your tasks.
- In Important, you will find all the tasks that you have assigned a star.
- In Planned, all tasks with a date.
- Assigned to you contains all of the tasks that someone else has assigned to you, allowing you to share task lists.
- In Reported email, you’ll find all the emails in your Outlook inbox that you’ve flagged.
- Tasks acts as home for all entries you have not assigned elsewhere.
Manage tasks and lists
To enter a new task in a list, select it and click on the top of its page, just below the list title. Type the content of your task and hit enter on your keyboard or click “ADD” on the right. Note that the input field remains active after adding a task, allowing you to continue adding other tasks to the same list.
To add tasks to another list, select it and repeat the process.
By selecting a task with a left click, a panel appears on the right, offering more control.
The first option, “Add a step”, allows you to add subtasks to your task, turning it into a mini-project. The second, “Add to my day”, adds the task to To-Do’s special “My day” list which contains all the active tasks for the day.
The rest of the options allow you to add a reminder, due date, select if (and when) the selected task will repeat, assign it a color / label / category, add file or note.
To move tasks from one list to another, you can “drag and drop” them with your mouse.
To mark a task as completed, click in the empty circle to its left, and to prioritize it over others, click the star to its right.
Finally, to create new lists, note the option with precisely that name at the bottom of the left category panel.
With Ao, you can use shortcuts to create new lists, move between them, add, edit, mark as completed, or delete tasks. The important predefined categories have their own shortcuts, allowing you to access them directly.
Here is a list of the shortcuts that we have found most useful when using Ao:
- Go to: My day – Ctrl + M
- Go to: Important – Ctrl + I
- Go to: Planned – Ctrl + P
- Go to: Tasks – Ctrl + J
- New list – Ctrl + L
- Delete list – Ctrl + Offset + re
- Rename list – Ctrl + AND
- New task – Ctrl + NOT
- Delete task – Ctrl + re
- Rename task – Ctrl + T
- Add a task to my day – Ctrl + K
- Mark the task as completed – Ctrl + Offset + NOT
- Add a reminder to the task – Ctrl + Offset + E
- Add a due date to the task – Ctrl + Offset + T.
- Hide completed tasks – Ctrl + Offset + H
As you can see, it’s easy to manage your Microsoft To-Do in Linux, but if you’re looking for a similar app for macOS / iOS, the Default Reminders app is a very useful to-do app. Here’s how to put Reminders on Mac to good use.
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