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How to set up Memory for Windows
How to set up Memory for Windows

Automatically capture your desktop activity your way

Lisa avatar
Written by Lisa
Updated this week

Plans 💳 : Everyone

User Permissions 👥: Everyone

Memory is Timely's tool that automatically records everything you work on to a beautiful private timeline. It captures the files you've worked on, websites you've visited on your computer, events you've attended, and places you've visited.

It works in the background while you work, so you don't have to manually track your time or remember what you've worked on. By capturing everything you do, you get a complete picture of what you work on each day. 🎉

Below, we’ve laid out everything you need to get set up with Memory for Windows:

🔔 Important Memory for Windows Enhancements

As of May 2024 we're excited to announce a complete "under the hood" overhaul and re-design of the Memory for Windows app. This has been a key initiative for us and will allow us to delivery a consistent, and amazing, experience no matter the platform or device you use.

⚒️ While we gradually roll out this update to all of our Windows customers, there may be some who are still using the legacy version of Memory for Windows.

If your Memory application window looks like this:

Please refer back to the Help Center article HERE for more information or troubleshooting steps.

Downloading Memory

If you haven’t downloaded Memory from the prompts in your Timely account, don’t worry! You can download the most up-to-date version of the app from our website or use this link:

Installing Memory

Once you’ve downloaded the app, save the .zip file, extract the files, and double-click Memory.exe. You might get a message saying Windows protected your PC and a button that says Don't run. Just click on More info and Run anyway to grant Memory an exception. It'll look like this:

Note: This message shows up because we haven't had any apps listed on Windows before, so Timely is marked as unknown. With a few downloads and a bit of time passing, Windows accepts newbies as trusted developers. ✅

You can open the Memory app by clicking the brain icon in the System Tray. It'll look like this:

Allow Timely to make changes to your device by selecting Yes then launch the application and click to log in. You’ll then be routed to sign in on a browser using your email address and password, Google or Apple authentication:

Pro-Tip ✅

Memory will be switched ON by default to start capturing all of your work automatically, but you’re welcome to turn this OFF by toggling the button back to the left. When Memory is OFF, it doesn't collect any data so just be sure to turn it back on when you need to track your hours! ⚡

Best Practice 💯

We recommend selecting Launch on Startup in case you forget to turn Memory on after restarting your computer so you never miss a billable hour again.

Customizing Memory

Idle time detection 🟡

Jumped on a call or pulled into a meeting at the last minute? Memory’s got you covered with idle time detection. For those moments where work can’t wait and you’re taken out of your current task, Memory can detect when you are away from your computer, and prompt you to create an entry for the time you spend offline! 💡

Simply click the Settings gear in Memory, then Advanced to toggle idle detection ON or OFF.

If you tend to work with your apps in fullscreen, you can also select the option to keep idle detection from being enabled while using those apps:

Enable schedule 📆

One of the most important things in any job is work/life balance; being able to leave work at work is essential to keep yourself from burning out. As such, you can now schedule Memory to only be active during your work hours. As soon as your workday ends, Memory will stop capturing your activity.

From the Advanced tab, click Enable schedule then set the days and times you want Memory to be active:

This feature is especially useful if you use your personal computer for work, providing an important barrier between your professional and personal spaces.

Pause ⏸

While the world doesn’t have a pause button for everything that comes our way, Memory now offers the option to take a break from capturing activity whenever you need to step away from your work.

You can choose to pause Memory directly from the Settings gear or from the Advanced tab within the Settings menu — whether for 15 or 30 minutes, 1 hour, or 24 hours:

This can be especially helpful if your workdays are very flexible and using the Schedule would require a lot of maintenance. 🚧

Rules ⚖️

Using simple rules, you can now tell Memory for Windows to ignore or rewrite specific activities locally on your computer before anything is uploaded to your private timeline.

To start setting up rules, open Memory, click the Settings gear, and go to Settings > Rules. In that menu, you’ll see a “+” further down where you can follow the prompts to create rules for recorded activities:

  1. Enter the name of the website title, part of the URL, application or document name, for instance “Spotify”.

  2. If you don’t want to see the activity on your timeline, click the “Ignore the memory” radio button.

  3. If you want to change the name of the activity, select “Change the memory to” and enter a new title (and URL if applicable) to be displayed when the memory is uploaded to your private timeline.

  4. Click “Save” and you’re done! You’ll then see the new rule you’ve created along with a brief description of what it does along with any others you’ve created.

Note: You need to finish writing a rule and save it before you can create a new one. Rules are then displayed in chronological order and can be reordered by dragging/dropping in the UI.

Rules are then applied in the order they appear in the list, meaning that if you have set up a rule to ignore Spotify followed by a rule that changes the name of Spotify memories to “Music”, the rule to ignore Spotify will be applied first.

Keep in mind: rules apply only to the desktop or website version of the app in question. As an example, if you have a rule to ignore Zoom memories from the desktop application, a memory will still appear in your timeline whenever you launch Zoom or open a Zoom tab/window from a web browser. In this case, you would need to set up two rules—one for blocking web app activity and one for blocking desktop app activity—to stop all Zoom memories from appearing in Timely.

How do I uninstall Memory for Windows? 🚫

If you're sure you want to uninstall it completely, first head over to your Control Panel. If need be, select View by Small Icons, to see all the items within the Control Panel. Then, select Programs and Features from the list of Control Panel items. From there, find Memory, right-click on it and click Uninstall.

Important Note: Within the Timely Ecosystem settings you'll see Memory listed similar to shown here:

Clicking the "Remove" button in this area will NOT uninstall Memory from your device. This option will log you out of Memory and will delete any existing un-logged memories captured to-date.

This option should only be used if you no longer have access to the physical device where Memory is installed and/or you would like to remove any of the captured memories associated with account you've logged in with.


What are the OS requirements? 📋

Memory for Windows supports Windows 8 and above.

What do I do if memories aren’t appearing on my timeline? 🤔

Our dedicated article for troubleshooting issues with Memory has the info you need to get started.

I'm in a large company and I'm having trouble downloading Memory for Windows. What should I do? 🏢

If you get a message saying you need admin rights to your server/network to install the app, contact your IT Admin and have them activate this .msi file:

Please reach out to if you are interested in a MSI installer for the Memory for Windows app.

That should create a machine-wide installation, installing the app on log-in for all users. They can also run: Setup.exe --machine.

Is my data safe/private? 🔒

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