Microsoft receives an ‘F’ for daylight savings time change March 10, 2007Posted by Matsu in Business, Information Technology, Microsoft, Software, Technology, Windows/Microsoft.
Where I work we have two Exchange 2003 servers handling about 1,500 accounts (faculty, staff, and students). Well, we’ve been planning the Daylight Savings Time (DST) change for weeks. There was supposed to be a way in which a systems administrator could run a Microsoft-provided utility that would adjust all appointments between March 11th and April 1st (the U.S. Congress decided to make the time change 3 weeks earlier this year).
It turns out that just changing the system clock would not solve the problem of everyone’s appointments being an hour off. Microsoft wrote the Exchange software so that it counts the number of hours (or minutes) from a fixed point in time, like so many minutes from January 1st, 1990 or something like that. Therefore, just changing the system clock and the client computer clocks wasn’t enough to solve the time shift.
After spending several hours trying to get the Microsoft solution to work, my network staff finally gave up and called technical support. Believe it or not, Microsoft would NOT help. They informed us that while they would be glad to take our money, the DST problem was not a critical problem so they would not be able to help us. They were only taking total system outage calls and not minor problems like DST. So much for vendor support. Open source is looking better and better!
Now, we are going to tell our users that they will need to run a client-side utility and hope that it will fix some or most of the appointments in their calendar. It was run on my account and it only fixed about half of my appointments. And, there’s no pattern as to why that is. Some appointments that worked are recurring, some are not. Some are very old, some are recent entries. What a hassle!
Microsoft receives a failing grade for their handling of the daylight savings time change.