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Wrong Timestamp On My Post RRS feed

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  • In our forums http://social.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/category/genuine we manually track every thread that is created (including time/date thread was created, time/date of first reply, URL of thread and so on).  Since Forums 4.0 went live, the Time/Date stamp for all post are incorrect by 14 or 16 hours. 

    My computer's Time Zone (and Windows Live ID's) setting have not changed (still set to Pacific Time) and I am unable to find any forum specific setting that control how Time/Dates are displayed.


    I took a random sampling of my Tracking Database and  below are the results.

    First column shows the Thread Creation Time/Date Stamp, that is currently being shown.
    Second column shows the Thread Creation Time/Date Stamp that we recorded (these stamps were recorded before Forum 4.0 went live)
    Third column is the difference (in hours) between the two stamps. 

    Note: strangely enough, the difference changes (by 2 hours) depending on if Daylight Saving Time is in affect or not.

     

    Date/Time from Thread

    Date/Time from DB

    Diff

    8/31/08 12:01 AM

    8/30/08 10:01 AM

    14:00

    9/2/08 3:19 AM

    9/1/08 1:19 PM

    14:00

    9/18/08 2:25 PM

    9/18/08 12:25 AM

    14:00

    1/2/09 3:29 PM

    1/1/09 11:29 PM

    16:00

    1/11/09 11:43 PM

    1/11/09 7:43 AM

    16:00

    1/31/09 1:09 PM

    1/30/09 9:09 PM

    16:00

    2/11/09 4:01 AM

    2/10/09 12:01 PM

    16:00

    2/27/09 3:59 PM

    2/26/09 11:59 PM

    16:00

    3/1/09 4:30 AM

    2/28/09 12:30 PM

    16:00

    3/4/09 9:28 AM

    3/3/09 5:28 PM

    16:00

    3/10/09 3:28 PM

    3/10/09 1:28 AM

    14:00

    3/10/09 10:04 PM

    3/10/09 8:04 AM

    14:00

    3/18/09 7:06 PM

    3/18/09 5:06 AM

    14:00

    3/21/09 6:14 AM

    3/20/09 4:14 PM

    14:00

    3/26/09 4:26 PM

    3/26/09 2:26 AM

    14:00

       

     This issue is affecting my whole team and will either throw off our service level metrics (which our performance is judged by) or will cause us wasted time in converting every Time/Date we record.

    Please fix the problem or direct me to the forum setting that control how Time and Dates are displayed.

    Thank you,
    Darin Smith
    Microsoft Genuine Advantage Forum Moderator 


    Attention All Forum Users: Please Do Not post your issue in someone else's Thread...Create your own. If any post fixes your issue, please vote the post as Helpful" button for that post. This will help us showcase the threads that best help our customers.
    • Merged by mattfras1 Tuesday, April 14, 2009 6:42 PM same question
    Friday, April 10, 2009 11:48 PM
  • >Attention All Forum Users: Please Do Not post your issue in someone else's Thread...Create your own. If any post fixes your issue, please vote the post as Helpful" button for that >post. This will help us showcase the threads that best help our customers.


    I find this in your sig amusing. (Especially "Please Do Not post your issue in someone else's Thread...Create your own.")

    The thread directly before this thread (http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/reportabug/thread/40b6db76-8d95-4814-94b9-3ea6c5f33d88) was reporting ***exactly the same issue*** of problems with a timestamp. There is in such cases absolutely no point in posting a new thread reporting the same thing.

    (or do you want forums to be full of virtually identical threads).


    Surely in this case you should have added your post as a reply to the original error report thread giving more information (which you certainly do). But a new thread .... ?


    ***MUCH LATER***  The two threads have now been merged. At the time I posted the above they hadn't been.


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    Saturday, April 11, 2009 8:14 AM
  • Interesting. You say it is 4:25 PM, but I'm seeing that you posted at 4:25 AM. Would you agree that your post timestamps seem to be 12 hours off, or are you seeing a slightly different offset (say, 10 hours, since I'm in PDT and you are CDT)
    Matt Fraser, STO Forums Software Developer
    Monday, April 13, 2009 7:10 PM
  • It sure is interesting.

    My computer has the right time zone GMT-6.00, Central Daylight Time.

    It has the right time, 2:45 PM, Monday 4/13/09, which agrees with that shown by Dish Network.

    My other posts used to show the right time but now do not.

    I looked in my Profile, but could not find anywhere to check or set a timezone.

    Monday, April 13, 2009 7:44 PM
  • Yeah, Mike, but what about our problem?

    Btw, when did you make the previous post?  I am seeing Saturday, 4/11, 3:14:32 PM

    I am seeing just about the same time on my PC--except it is two days later.  Coincidence?

    This post now seems to have a time stamp precisely 12 hours after the actual time.
    Monday, April 13, 2009 8:13 PM
  • No. We used to use the client to generate timestamps, which meant it always displayed local time. We store in the DB using UDT (I believe) though. Looks like we're doing all server side generation of this now (as of 4.x), and so there's no translation. We definitely should look at either a) using the client to alter dates or b) having a setting for timezone (though we'd have to look into how to implement all the different daylight saving time rules, then, and we woudn't be able to do nearly as much HTML output caching)
    Matt Fraser, STO Forums Software Developer
    Monday, April 13, 2009 8:14 PM
  • Hello Mike,

      I am gratified that I was able to amuse you. That really was my goal.

      My Sig is meant for the Forums I moderate.  As I stated in my original post, we track every thread created. We ask users to creat their own thead for two reasons.

    a) Due to the nature of WGA issues, most appear, on the surface, to be very simillare, but usually have vastly different causes and fixes. So having 4-5 different issues in the same thread is confusing and usually causes Time to Resolution to go up for all involved.
    b) It helps us to more easaly track our Time to Respond, Time to Resolution, Issue Trending (and so on) metrics.

    If I had know my sig was so amusing that it would cause someone to highjack my thread, I would have edited it out.

      Since there is no guidance (in this forums announcments) in the expected way to post, I followed my own forum's policy. If the actual moderater(s) of this forum have a problem with my thread being separate from bnborg's thread, they have the power to merge the two.


    Anyways, while I'm sure this dicussion of forum etiquette is fascinating, it fails to bring us closer to a resolution to the issue at hand. 

    May I get a response to my issue that is On Topic?  

    Thank you
    Darin Smith
    Microsoft Genuine Advantage Moderator
     
    Attention All Forum Users: Please Do Not post your issue in someone else's Thread...Create your own. If any post fixes your issue, please vote the post as Helpful" button for that post. This will help us showcase the threads that best help our customers.
    Monday, April 13, 2009 8:57 PM
  • It seems to me that the timezone correction is being applied backwards.  In otherwords, it is being added instead of subtracted.

    If, for me in CDT, the six hours is added to UTC instead of subtracted, this yields a time exactly 12 hours in the future.

    For Pacific Daylight Time, GMT-8.00, it gives us exactly 16 hours.

    Standard time instead of Daylight would imply an offset (from the actual time) that would be two hours less.

    Tuesday, April 14, 2009 9:25 PM
  • So, I'm not sure exactly what is happening right now, but I know there was a fix to at least standardize it to UTC for this month's release. From there we'll look at reintroducing timezones.

    Matt
    Matt Fraser, STO Forums Software Developer
    Wednesday, April 15, 2009 12:34 AM
  • You can't see it until the reported time stamp goes from "x hours y minutes ago" to an absolute time.  Look how the dates in Mr. Smith's table correlate to the offset.  It is off 14 hours during standard time, 16 hours during daylight savings time.  Exactly half the UTC offset for Redmond.  Looks like you record the UTC time okay but than *add* instead of subtract the offset again when you render the post.  Bnborg's explanation was very close.

    Either way, the timestamp you show is useless for anybody other than PST residents.  At least render the UTC stamp as-is, we can do the math.  Please do double-check with the MSDN crew about the problems with their Forums 2.x implementation of time zones.  Client-side scripting is pretty crucial to get it right.  I assume that's what Forums 3.x did.
    Hans Passant.
    Wednesday, April 15, 2009 5:22 PM
  • Either way, the timestamp you show is useless for anybody other than PST residents.  At least render the UTC stamp as-is, we can do the math.  Please do double-check with the MSDN crew about the problems with their Forums 2.x implementation of time zones.  Client-side scripting is pretty crucial to get it right.  I assume that's what Forums 3.x did.
    Hans Passant.

    Right. What I was attempting to say was that for the April release, we are at least standardizing to UTC. I think we thought we were doing that before but we may just be rendering server time or something.

    You're right, 3.x did all the conversion from UTC to local on the client.
    Matt Fraser, STO Forums Software Developer
    Thursday, April 16, 2009 12:34 AM