IT managers confident of DST precautions

Daylight savings time kicks in at 2am this Sunday

New Zealand organisations appear to be taking daylight savings time (DST) changes in their stride, reporting they are not overly concerned about potential impacts on IT systems.

Amanda White, IT manager of Blenheim-based Marlborough Lines, says she had to make sure the company’s supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system was patched for this weekend’s time change.

After some initial problems, mainly caused by the fact that Microsoft’s free patches cover Windows XP Service Pack 2 onwards — not SP1 — she contacted the vendor and has now taken all necessary precautions.

But changes to daylight saving are not just affecting Windows. They will affect any time-dependent software or device, she says. The changes will likely also affect operating systems such as Sun Solaris and IBM AIX, as well as software platforms such as Java, .Net and Oracle.

“I just hope people are prepared,” White says.

DST kicks in at 2am this Sunday.

Microsoft warned users recently that changes to the dates of daylight saving would have implications for IT managers, and the company is going big on information about the changes on its local website.

John Holley, information systems manager at the Auckland Regional Council, is not overly concerned about the changes. There will probably be a few odd little glitches, he says, but if companies are up to date with patching, if they have contacted third party vendors, and if synchronisation is in place, there should not be any major problems.

Microsoft is providing free patches and updates to its currently supported applications and operating systems — from Windows XP Service Pack 2 onwards — but charges for fixes for non-supported products, such as Windows 2000.

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