January 11, 2007

Daylight Saving Time – The Year 2007 Problem

Daylight Saving TimeThis March, Daylight Saving Time (DST) changes for the United States, starting the time change 4 weeks early. Congress in its infinite wisdom changed DST in the Energy Policy Act of 2005. Other countries such as Australia have followed suit. For most people, this will come as an early relief from winter doldrums, but for IT, the DST change is a major headache. After Year 2000, IT vendors were smart enough to start using 4-digit date codes, but DST changes are still hard-coded for the 1st Sunday of April and the last Sunday of October.

To accommodate the DST change, most IT systems must be patched. Otherwise, timestamps will be off, and some applications my fail to work. For instance, if you synchronize your Windows Smartphone with Microsoft Exchange, and you want your calendar reminders to work, plan on applying patches or fixes to Windows XP, Windows 2003, Exchange 2003 & Windows Mobile. Otherwise, you may be late for that all-important TPS meeting.

Unfortunately, this change has not received the attention it deserves, so many IT shops have not yet started, and there are only 60 days to get patches tested and deployed. Also, it is not enough to assume that if your servers have the correct time, your applications and databases will work. Some applications are “system time aware,” yet others require their own unique patches.

To simplify matters, I have compiled the following list of major IT vendor links to their 2007 DST fixes:

Finally, don’t forget firewalls, routers, switches, NTP appliances, time clocks, PBX systems, IVR/ACD systems, cell phones, PDAs, photo copiers, fax machines, and all the other devices on your network that recognize or require time/date to operate properly. All of these will likely need either patches or manual fixes to facilitate the change.

If you haven’t started yet, don’t wait. Compile a list of your time-dependant systems, applications, databases and devices. Prioritize the list based upon importance and impact if the device isn’t patched. Check the vendor’s website for fixing the problem. If you use outsourcers, such as hosting companies, application service providers (ASP), or payroll vendors, contact them and ask them to certify their readiness for the change. Create a plan and get it done. Hint: The fastest way to find vendor patches is with our old friend Google. Try this query: (site:vendorsite.com daylight saving time 2007).

If you find any other vendor patches, please feel free to post them here in the comments section.

Good luck,

-Bill

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34 Comments »

  1. Windows Mobile DST fix » The PC Doctor’s blog said,

    January 16, 2007 @ 6:33 am

    [...] As discussed here , the Daylight Saving Time change for 2007 is going to cause problems for unpatched technologies. Most vendors, including Microsoft, have released patches. One big area that is lacking is Windows Mobile smartphones & PDAs. Microsoft release a registry fix and instructed the carriers to push out a patch. Most of the carriers, in their infinite wisdom, have neglected to do so. If you rely on your Windows smartphone, you need this fix. Microsoft published the registry fix here . This fix requires you to build a CAB file and then install it. To save you the trouble, I have bundled the CAB file for you. [...]

  2. Notes » DST said,

    January 21, 2007 @ 8:15 pm

    [...] http://www.edgeblog.net/2007/daylight-saving-time-the-year-2007-problem/ [...]

  3. Daniel said,

    January 23, 2007 @ 2:00 pm

    Blackberry system
    http://www.blackberry.com/select/dst2007/index.shtml

  4. Y2k7 - Daylight Savings Time at The Geek Blog said,

    January 24, 2007 @ 8:14 am

    [...] And Bill at the EdgeBlog has put together a nice list of links to various IT vendors for their DST 2007 fixes/patches. [...]

  5. martijn said,

    January 25, 2007 @ 8:15 am

    http://kb.juniper.net/CUSTOMERSERVICE/index?page=kbdetail&record_id=0252030ca3783010f5a6414b900650f

    is a better one for Juniper because links to all of their products are in this KB article.

  6. shahine.com/omar/ - Preparing for new daylight savings changes in 2007 said,

    January 26, 2007 @ 5:57 pm

    [...] Preparing for new daylight savings changes in 2007 Unless you crawled under a rock, you should know that this year Daylight savings time has beenextended by 4 weeks. This is a result of the Energy Policy Act of 2005. It will begin 3 weeks earlier in the spring, and end 1 week later in the fall. Cool you might think! Well not if you are a computer.[...]

  7. tcolvinMI said,

    January 27, 2007 @ 8:04 pm

    Keep in mind that Microsoft has released a patch for several versions of Windows, but Windows 2000 is not one of them. In order to update a WIn2k system, you must use the tzedit utility available from Microsoft.

  8. DavidS said,

    January 27, 2007 @ 11:34 pm

    For patching of both supported and unsupported versions of Microsoft Windows including NT4, Windows 2000 Pro, Windows 2000 Server, Windows XP, and Windows Server 2003, (and YES Windows Vista too despite what you might have heard), there is a utility available at http://www.sharpebusinesssolutions.com/dst2007.htm that can handle the required OS patches. This tool should be use on all of your Windows clients and servers worldwide. The tool handles all service pack levels of each operating system platform mentioned above.

  9. Gav said,

    January 31, 2007 @ 12:34 pm

    FreeBSD 6.2 contains the required change, all previous versions need to install the misc/zoneinfo port which will update all the relevant files. (make sure your ports tree is recent)

  10. tech_ed said,

    January 31, 2007 @ 1:56 pm

    For the Newton, this free utility is invaluable for setting DST:
    http://www.softwarebueromueller.de/englisch/newton/daylight/index.htm

    Ed
    web/gadget guru
    Download Newton packages directly onto your Newton: http://newton.tek-ed.com

  11. Kevin Hatfield’s Blog » Little late…but it’s coming! said,

    February 1, 2007 @ 12:11 am

    [...] http://www.edgeblog.net/2007/daylight-saving-time-the-year-2007-problem/ [...]

  12. Tech Tips » Y2K7? said,

    February 2, 2007 @ 3:31 pm

    [...] More info: edgeblog, Microsoft [...]

  13. Salil Divekar said,

    February 6, 2007 @ 11:45 pm

    Hi Bill,

    I work for Persistent Systems Pvt Ltd and we are testing for the correct patches applied to our product “Mobile Device Manager” by Innopath (located Sunnyvale, CA).

    Could you please let me know what kind of scenarios I would have to consider to ensure that the patches have been correctly applied ?
    What conditions to I need to simulate ?

    One scenario I feel is there should be no entry in the DB that will have a TimeStamp like “1:13:00AM” as the clock would Spring forward from 1″1:00:00AM” to “2:00:00″.

    Appreciate your help in this matter.

    Warm Regards.
    Salil

  14. bill said,

    February 7, 2007 @ 12:44 am

    Salil,

    The clocks change at 2:00AM, so you shouldn’t see any time entries from 02:00:01 – 02:59:59.

    -Bill

  15. Janet Junkins said,

    February 7, 2007 @ 1:21 pm

    the problem is all this blog and reading material of what may happen gave me a cluster migraine. Thankyou

  16. AK’s Adventures » Longer days…Y2K7 Problem said,

    February 11, 2007 @ 2:15 pm

    [...] For most of us, this means we’ll get to enjoy longer days for a few more weeks, but for those of us in IT, we’ll be doing some extra work so that systems will remain operational. A good page for info can be found here. [...]

  17. “… the bony, blue-fingered hand of Puritanism …” « Touamoto Sakimata-Smith said,

    February 12, 2007 @ 11:33 pm

    [...] February 12th, 2007 Of all the idiotic ideas that have been foisted upon “we the sheeple” over the ages, is there any more asinine than Daylight Saving Time? And now, thanks to our good friends in the Bush Administration, we get to “enjoy” 4 extra weeks of DST this year starting on March 11. As if we weren’t busy enough, now we have to worry about all of this stuff too –> DST 2007 Problem. [...]

  18. Freebsd - non 6.2 systems said,

    February 13, 2007 @ 8:59 am

    short notes on how to update non 6.2 release systems.

  19. Robert said,

    February 23, 2007 @ 3:19 pm

    We have some NT 4.0 and 2000 servers and this daylight saving time DST utility
    works great. Local machine and remote servers are supported. Price is right too. Donate what you like

    http://ezpcsoft.esitehosting.com

  20. David Sharpe said,

    February 25, 2007 @ 12:46 pm

    Thanks for pointing this out. IT professionals worldwide need to be cognizant of the DST2007 problem, especially if your organization, your organizations customers, or your partners have a physical or electronic presence in the United States or Canada. There is a small but growing body of information available online to help address the DST2007 problem. For example, there is a tool available at sharpebusinesssolutions.com/dst2007.htm to help with one of the toughest parts of the problem – unsupported versions of Microsoft Windows.

  21. Martin said,

    February 26, 2007 @ 9:10 am

    We have several workstations W2K and XP with both Outlook 2003.
    After applying the patches (on servers and workstations) we noticed that when a user working on W2K workstation with Outlook 2003 books a meeting, it shows it one hour off on an XP workstation with Outlook 2003. Anyone got a cue?
    Thanks,

  22. Daylight Saving Hours Headache « doufu.connect said,

    February 28, 2007 @ 8:44 am

    [...] to the source can be found here. Filed under: Infotech [...]

  23. Mattew said,

    March 1, 2007 @ 2:22 am

    Just a great solution of DST issue from Scriptlogic:

    http://www.sys-con.com/read/341862.htm

    We are going to patch all our desktops this way.

  24. Steven said,

    March 1, 2007 @ 6:42 am

    and then there’s Palm…

    http://www.palm.com/us/support/downloads/dst.html

  25. Aleesa said,

    March 2, 2007 @ 1:45 pm

    Why! Will somebody just tell me why it was changed? I want to know if the daylight is starting earlier than usual or if things have always been the same.

    Is it getting lighter out earlier than it use to? That’s my question. Does anyone have any information on this? Or, is there a website that explains it all?

    Thank you!

  26. CJ said,

    March 4, 2007 @ 6:14 pm

    Well-written article in today’s Boston Globe explains what motivated the Democrat US Representative Markey to propose this change and press it through Congress to approval.

    http://www.boston.com/news/nation/articles/2007/03/04/a_new_daylight_is_dawning/

    A surprising side-effect I’ve heard of is for businesses (e.g., clinics) that use date of birth to verify personal identity. A midnight hour is sometimes stored or defaulted for DOB, and if an application-wide date-correction routine isn’t carefully tailored it can adjust DOB for those with birthdates in the 4-week window from March – April to appear as one day early.

    The daylight savings time switch to a March start is a major hassle for appointment scheduling systems.

  27. SysAdmin said,

    March 4, 2007 @ 10:39 pm

    1). For your Windows machines, use the tool available at http://www.sharpebusinesssolutions.com/dst2007. Don’t forget that any MS Exchange/Outlook patching that you need to do must be timed tightly with your Windows server AND client operating system patching.
    2). All versions Java are a potential problem, as are many commonly employed Microsoft products. To quickly get your head around which software in your environment might require attention, navigate to http://www.calconnect.org/ and click on Daylight Saving Time.

  28. Nathan Stanley said,

    March 9, 2007 @ 2:54 am

    Hi Aleesa. Follow the link that Matt gave. There’s a link (http://www.scriptlogic.com/dst) to Scriptlogic site where they collected some info on this issue. A good explanatory set notes on the problem, who can be affected by it and the way they provide to solve it. Thanks, Matt!

  29. Dan S said,

    March 11, 2007 @ 6:47 pm

    Just an old retired IT guy here. I thought I’d be OK here at home with my home PC. What freaked me out is that NONE of the available online time-servers have been updated today for auto-updating PC time! This is at 8:46 CST on March 11! Unbelievable…

  30. Taehoon’s Blog » Blog Archive » Daylight Savings Change in the U.S. 2007 said,

    March 15, 2007 @ 11:23 pm

    [...] References: NIST Time and Frequency FAQ Information about WWVB Radio Controlled Clocks Microsoft’s Help and Support Regarding Apple’s Daylight Savings Time change in 2007 Energy Policy Act of 2005 Major IT vendor links from edgeblog [...]

  31. PaoFueye said,

    October 9, 2007 @ 1:24 pm

    I am looking for a DST patch for NETBSD. Anyone can give me a tip??

  32. bill said,

    October 9, 2007 @ 8:41 pm

    Pao Fueye,

    Look here for NetBSD:

    http://mail-index.netbsd.org/netbsd-announce/2007/02/27/0000.html

    You should be OK.:

    Daylight Saving Time Changes: Nothing new for NetBSD

    Daylight Saving Time (DST) was extended in a number of countries starting
    in 2007. For example, beginning in 2007, most of the USA will begin
    Daylight Saving Time at 2:00 a.m. on the second Sunday in March and revert
    to standard time on the first Sunday in November. While this has caused a
    number of software vendors a lot of headache, NetBSD has shipped with the
    appropriate timezone files for years; even though changes to timezones
    in general and DST rules in particular happen a few times a year
    throughout the world, the NetBSD operating system has of course always
    provided accurate and up to date zone files as soon as possible.

    The Energy Policy Act of 2005 was signed into USA law on August 8, 2005.
    The updated tzdata package (tzdata2005m) was imported into our source tree
    on August 29, 2005, and was pulled up into the netbsd-2 (September 5,
    2005), netbsd-2-0 and netbsd-3 (both September 6, 2005) branches and is
    thus present in NetBSD 2.0.3, 2.1, 3.0, 3.0.1, 3.1 and the 4.x branches.

    In other words, if you’re running one of these systems, no action on your
    part is required; your system is already prepared for the updated
    timezones and will continue to show the correct local time.

    If you are running an older system, we strongly encourage you to update to
    one of these releases. However, we do recognize that some organizations
    may have the need to continue to run older releases. You can update those
    systems as follows:

    # cd src
    # cvs update share/zoneinfo
    # make install

    Per default, /etc/localtime is a symbolic link to the actual timezone file
    under /usr/share/zoneinfo. However, if on your system / and /usr are not
    on the same partition, you need to copy the zone file from
    /usr/share/zoneinfo to /etc/localtime to make sure that services starting
    before /usr is mounted get the correct time.

    After installing the new zonefiles and making sure that /etc/localtime
    points to the correct file, you need to restart any and all running
    services that rely on the correct local time (such as crond, syslogd
    etc.): /etc/localtime is only read once when the application starts up,
    and any changes to that file are not picked up until the application is
    restarted.

    A reboot is not required, however, it is an easy way to make sure that all
    services are restarted and pick up the new information.

  33. PaoFueye said,

    October 10, 2007 @ 11:28 am

    Bill,

    Thank you very much. Your information was very helpful.

  34. Markus Mayer said,

    October 29, 2007 @ 1:25 pm

    For what it’s worth: I just discovered that a box of mine running NetBSD 3.0.2 was displaying the wrong time (already switched back to standard time), despite the fact that NetBSD claims to have been correct since 2005.

    Turns out that the US time zones are correct, but the Canadian ones weren’t: I use America/Vancouver as time zone on that box. In order to fix that, I grabbed the ‘northamerica’ time zone source file from the 3.1 release:

    $ cd /usr/src/share/zoneinfo
    $ cvs up -r netbsd-3-1-1-RELEASE northamerica
    $ su -
    # make install

    Now, everything’s correct.

    A less intrusive alternative would be to use the US equivalent of the Canadian time zone (so using America/Los_Angeles would have worked, too).

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