Helix Time Stamp Finder

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What is Helix Time Stamp Finder?

Helix Time Stamp Finder is a utility program that can examine the sequences in Helix collections for use of Time Stamp commands.

Why Helix Time Stamp Finder Exists

Helix 6.1 changes the specification for the Time Stamp command. In prior versions of Helix, a Time Stamp was automatically followed by a Tab character, moving the cursor to the next active field. By default, Helix 6.1 removes the trailing tab (you can restore it if desired) and allows you to define alternative text to append to the Time Stamp command.

This change has no serious effect on the use of Time Stamp from a user menu — except that you have to retrain your brain to manually add the tab to move to the next field — but a Time Stamp command in a sequence could be problematic. If the sequence goes on after the Time Stamp to manipulate fields via the Tab Field, Clear, Cut, Copy, or Paste commands, the sequence will not work as it did before, as the expected location of the cursor will be off by one, leading to unexpected results.

Helix Time Stamp Finder was created to give you an easy way to thoroughly check your collections for sequences containing Time Stamp commands.


To install Helix Time Stamp Finder, just drag it onto your hard drive.

How to Use Helix Time Stamp Finder

Just drag and drop one or more Helix collections onto it. (You can also double click Helix Time Stamp Finder and select one or more collections from the Open dialog box.)

Once the collection status has been verified a Save dialog box appears. Name and save the text file according to your personal preferences. This file contains the detailed collection exam report.

After you have specified where to save the report, Helix Time Stamp Finder starts examining the collection(s) for instances of the Time Stamp commands. Progress thermometers keep you apprised of what is happening. When the process is complete, an Exam Summary dialog lets you know if any issues were found. Details are found in the saved report. See below for a sample of the detailed report format.

If you open multiple collections at the same time, the process repeats for each collection. Note that you must be present to name each exam report and to dismiss the exam summary. Other than that, the program runs unattended, unless errors are encountered.


Helix Time Stamp Finder is freeware. It is provided by Autograph Systems. If you find this program useful, think kindly of us and maybe buy something from the web store. Autograph Systems is an Authorized Apple Reseller.

Helix Time Stamp Finder may be freely distributed, as long as the entire package, including this documentation, is included with it.


Helix Time Stamp Finder only works with Helix collections from version 5.2 to 6.1. If you attempt to examine an earlier (or later) collection, a warning is displayed and the collection will not be checked.

Current information about the transition to OS X native Helix can be found at the QSA ToolWorks web site.

Helix Time Stamp Finder relies on two embedded tools: Helix Scripting Demo and 24U Appearance OSAX. Helix Scripting Demo is part of the CallHelix 2.0 package, sold by Autograph Systems. 24U Appearance OSAX is a third party scripting addition (OSAX) licensed for distribution by Autograph Systems. If you are an AppleScript user, I highly recommend 24U Appearance OSAX.

Report Format

The exam report is formatted as a simple text file.

The first entries are purely informational, containing the collection name, the date and time, and finally the List of Sequences that contain a Time Stamp command.

Following that is the name of each sequence that contains a Time Stamp command. The sequences are listed in the order they are found in the collection, not in alphabetical order. Only sequences that contain a Time Stamp command are detailed.

Details include the entire list of sequence steps and a marker indicating where the command is found and where potential trouble may exist further along in the sequence. See the sample report.

Sample Report

** Helix Time Stamp Finder 1.0 Report for Collection Time Clock **

4 Sequences Found. Searching for a Time Stamp command...

** Start Sequence List **

The sequence 'Time Stamp' contains the Time Stamp command:
Step  Command
----  -------
  1   Time Stamp    <-- Time Stamp

The sequence 'Time Calculator' contains the Time Stamp command with subsequent commands that could potentially be a problem:
Step  Command
----  -------
  1   View: Get Time Calculation
  2   Home Field
  3   Tab Field
  4   Time Stamp    <-- Time Stamp
  5   Tab Field    <-- Potential Trouble
  6   Copy    <-- Potential Trouble
  7   Close

** End Sequence List **

4 sequences were examined.

2 sequences were found containing the Time Stamp command.

** End of Report **

Version History

v1.0 — Initial Release: December 3, 2007