Porteus timezone configuration utility

New features which should be implemented in Porteus; suggestions are welcome. All questions or problems with testing releases (alpha, beta, or rc) should go in their relevant thread here, rather than the Bug Reports section.
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Porteus timezone configuration utility

Post#1 by Ahau » 12 Jul 2012, 14:59

Hi folks,

I made mention of this on another (Xfce-specific) thread, but this discussion belongs here in the Development section, so I'm starting a new thread.

I've put together a gtkdialog application (thanks to brokenman's examples and guidance) that will allow users to configure Porteus to read their system clock as if it is set to UTC time and specify the proper timezone. This will be useful for users that see the wrong time in their panel when they boot Porteus.

Here's a description of the problem:
Most systems are configured to have their system clock set to the local time. This means that if you live in New York and the time there is 7:30 (11:30 UTC/GMT), then your clock is set in BIOS to 7:30, and that is the time displayed on your panel clock in Porteus. This is all well and good, as most systems are set up this way ('localtime'). However, some systems have their clock set to UTC time and rely on a timezone offset in order to display the proper time. In this case, if you are in New York and the time there is 7:30, your clock in BIOS is set to 11:30 (UTC time) and the clock in your panel will be off from your local time by four hours (reading 11:30 instead of 7:30). Porteus has no way of autodetecting whether your system is set to localtime or UTC, or what your time zone ought to be, so by default it assumes your system is set to localtime. That is where this utility comes in.

Here is a link to download a module containing the script, an icon and a .desktop file (to add an item to your menu, under 'System'): http://porteus-xfce.googlecode.com/file ... noarch.xzm

To use this utility, download the module and activate it (or place it in /porteus/modules to have it activated on reboot and every booth thereafter). Then open your menu and go to System -> Porteus Timezone Settings. This opens the display with instructions. Select whether your system uses localtime or UTC. If you select UTC, you can then select your local timezone from the dropdown list. As you make changes, the clock in the lower right hand corner will be updated to show you what the system time will be if you apply those changes. When that looks right, click on the "OK" button, and your changes will be applied. If you are not using the "changes=" cheatcode, you will also be prompted to create a module that will save these settings for future reboots.

I should reiterate: If your system clock is already showing the correct time for your area, your system is set to "localtime" and you do not need to run this utility (but I still welcome your testing and feedback...plus it's kind of fun to set your timezone to someplace in Australia so you can pretend it's past 5pm and start drinking :beer: )

Please take a look and let me know if you run into any issues or if it's working fine.

One final note: KDE4/Trinity have their own built-in utilities for changing the timezones. The changes made by my utility will work as well (after logging out/back in to update the panel clock), so it's desktop-agnostic. If you happen to make changes via KDE/Trinity, those changes will override those set by my utility.

Please take a look at our online documentation, here. Suggestions are welcome!

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Re: Porteus timezone configuration utility

Post#2 by Tonio » 16 Jul 2012, 01:56


This tool is something that was missing but for Slax. Here in Porteus, things just work normally :) and
I used to have this problem in Slax. I had Fedora installed, and the clock worked well there. Then I would start Slax and the clock was 5 hours behind :( It was apparently using localtime and the Fedora desktop had utc and got the time by ntpdate. I would have liked to help in testing, but will be out this week for a conference. Hopefully the following week I can test things out and report back!

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Re: Porteus timezone configuration utility

Post#3 by francois » 10 Mar 2013, 20:30

Thanks for the porteus time zone configuration utility. I was a little lost for a long time. Now the clock makes sense for me. :D
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