New Mail List - timezones.external at

Doug Royer doug at
Fri Feb 4 07:36:01 UTC 2000

Paul Eggert wrote:
>    From: Doug Royer [SMTP:doug at]
>    Sent: Thursday, February 03, 2000 6:47 PM
>    The timezones.external at list is for public discussion
>    of timezone information.
> How does that mailing list's charter differ from that of
> tz at, which is a list for public discussion of time
> zone information that has been in use since 1986?
> I visited, but found no discussion of the new list.
> How does one join, or view its message archive?

It was at the end of the message:

To subscribe, send mail to timezones.external-request at
with 'subscribe' in the body of the message.

>    IANA as part of the IETF is looking into administrating the names
>    of world wide time zones.
> How and why will this administration differ from the process already
> in place for the existing time zone database?

It will control the names of the timezones in RFC-2445 format.

>            1) Port the government database and 'zic' (Zone Information
>               Compiler) to other OS's and have it also provide the
>               data in VTIMEZONE format. Most UNIX's use the government
>               database format and the zic compiler (man zic).
> On 1998-07-16 Antoine Leca <Antoine.Leca at> wrote that he was
> implementing (1); you might ask him how far he got.

I send email and ask. So far it only runs on UNIX (that I have seen) and
does not producde RFC-2445 format.

>            2) Convert the government database into VTIMEZONE records for IANA
>               to administer.
> Isn't conversion automatic? 

Its not automatic until the code is written. Then someone at IANA will keep
updateing the information from the government data or from direct input.

> If so, why would two databases need to be
> administered separately?  One database should be generated
> automatically from the other.

Could be. However IANA will acceppt the responsability. Where as it looks
to me if the government data is not authoritive. The administration will
also include (in time) servers that can serve out VTIMEZONE information
real time to calendar tools via CAP (Calendar Access Protocol).


>    And if someone want to volunteer - make a converter to go from
>    VTIMEZONE format to zic input format to keep the databases in sync.
> Why would this be necessary, if conversion is automatic?

Point me at something automatic that is doing this.

> FYI, here is a brief summary of existing sources for time zone data:
> And here is a copy of the tz mailing list archive:

I have already looked at those. I could not find anything that
supports RFC-2445.

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