Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Navy prepares computers for DST Change Issues

Here is the information on how the US Navy will handle DST issues for Windows and Outlook Express users. Are you ready for the new DST changes on your PC?

WASHINGTON (NNS) -- Beginning this year, Daylight Saving Time (DST) will start earlier and run longer than it used to, giving us a total of one more month of DST than in previous years. For most of the United States, DST will begin on the second Sunday in March and will run until the first Sunday of November. The new dates were set in the Energy Policy Act of 2005.

While this new change will provide us with more usable hours of daylight and could possibly help us to conserve more energy, it could also lead to some technological glitches. That's because computers, cell phones and PDAs with internal clocks are programmed to automatically make the necessary changes on the dates in April and October when DST used to start and end.

“Like most computers, NMCI desktops and laptops are running Windows operating systems, which are programmed for the old daylight-saving time,” said Marie Greening, NMCI program manager. “To fix this, the NMCI enterprise will distribute a patch to the Windows operating system and Microsoft Outlook to ensure the time zone settings for the NMCI computer’s system clock and Outlook calendar are correct.”

The patch will be distributed via a Radia push in a phased approach between Feb. 26 and March 5. As a reminder, NMCI users do not have to leave their computer on at night to receive this patch. In addition to the patch, NMCI will distribute the Outlook Time Zone Update Tool. This tool only needs to be run if users operate their calendar from an Outlook personal folder (.pst) or for users with a Science & Technology or Thin Client seat. For more detailed information, read the full NMCI User Alert at

While this patch is designed to ensure that the computer’s system clock is correct, it is a good practice during the extended daylight-saving time period (between March 11 and April 1) to include the time zone in the subject line of all meeting requests. This will help ensure that all participants whether on the NMCI network or not, have the correct start time for meetings during this extended period only.

Cell phones, BlackBerries, PDAs (Personal digital assistants) and other handheld devices do not need a patch. Service providers will directly, and automatically, update the devices to ensure the correct date and time are displayed.

Please note that some NMCI sites do not recognize daylight-saving time. Hawaii, Arizona and Japan will not be affected.