Need tip for simple AJAX-ish status updater in admin plugin interface

I’ve got a nice little plug-in coming along that does a lot of file transfers. It runs in the admin interface, so I’m not coding anything that’s user facing. Anyway, once the user clicks “Transfer” it can take 3-10 minutes for all the various files to be moved over.

I’d like to add a little something to my admin page that’s a crude status indicator. Even text that says “Transferred 10 of 50” and updates would be good enough.

Anyway, I’d rather not refresh the Web page 100 times while the transfer is going on, and the transfer is being controlled by a PHP routine called by my plug-in. Anyway, is there any way to add an easy snippet to do these little status updates. I’ve read some articles on adding AJAX to plug-ins and the code is more complex than my entire plug-in.

So… any way to do this easily, without a ton of convoluted muss and fuss?