Feeds

The danger of Daylight Saving Time

What's the real risk?

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Comment If the fuss currently being made about Dubbya's attempt to save energy by making the US go to Daylight Saving Time a fortnight early reminds me of anything, it's the hype we had to endure eight years ago about the Millennium Bug.

At the time, we were told that computers hard-coded to accept only 19xx dates would be crashing here, there and everywhere - quite literally, in the case of those aboard airliners. A slew of companies touted everything from expensive consultancy to PC patches. Much FUD was spread, and a fair bit of money was made.

However, come 1 January 2000, most of the work had already been done. The skies were notably clear of bamboozled Boeings, and while there were still a few problems, some with serious consequences for those affected, more were caused by the arrival of 2001 - possibly because 2000 was 366 days long, not 365, but that's another story.

So, will the DST changes be the 2007 equivalent of the Millennium Bug? Various commentators and some software companies have latched onto it as a potential disaster, and are hyping up the need to patch servers and workstations - but DST happens every year.

It wouldn't be the first time that servers have got their clocks out of step, either. After all, the US and Europe only managed to synchronise their shift to DST a few years ago, after decades of being a week or so out of sync.

Obviously, US server administrators need to make sure their systems "spring forward" on the right date - and that means applying patches and having the helpdesk staffed-up for 11 and 12 March - but is the fact that for a fortnight they'll only be four to seven hours behind the UK really significant?

Still, there are areas of business where electronic trading has grown hugely since 1999, and which are very much dependent on timings, such as financial trading and travel. If I were flying anywhere or booking appointments in the US in mid-March, I'd triple-check everything. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
Big Content outs piracy hotbeds: São Paulo, Beijing ... TORONTO?
MPAA calls Canadians a bunch of bootlegging movie thieves
Google Glassholes are UNDATEABLE – HP exec
You need an emotional connection, says touchy-feely MD... We can do that
Just don't blame Bono! Apple iTunes music sales PLUMMET
Cupertino revenue hit by cheapo downloads, says report
US court SHUTS DOWN 'scammers posing as Microsoft, Facebook support staff'
Netizens allegedly duped into paying for bogus tech advice
Feds seek potential 'second Snowden' gov doc leaker – report
Hang on, Ed wasn't here when we compiled THIS document
Verizon bankrolls tech news site, bans tech's biggest stories
No agenda here. Just don't ever mention Net neutrality or spying, ok?
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
New hybrid storage solutions
Tackling data challenges through emerging hybrid storage solutions that enable optimum database performance whilst managing costs and increasingly large data stores.
Getting ahead of the compliance curve
Learn about new services that make it easy to discover and manage certificates across the enterprise and how to get ahead of the compliance curve.