Time zone confusion and implementation hints

Jonathan Leffler jonathan.leffler at gmail.com
Fri Jul 2 21:58:21 UTC 2010

On Fri, Jul 2, 2010 at 1:34 PM, Bill Seymour <stdbill.h at pobox.com> wrote:

> On Fri, Jul 2, 2010 at 2:42 PM, Yves Goergen
> <nospam.list at unclassified.de> wrote:
> > On 02.07.2010 20:21 CE(S)T, Bill Seymour wrote:
> >> Attached is my understanding of the format of the binaries.
> >
> > Ehm, where's the time zone name? Does the binary file only contain a
> > single time zone?
> Yes, and the time zone name is the file name.  The '/' characters
> in the time zone name are Unix directory separators.  My understanding
> is that the directory where all the tz binaries reside can be found in
> some environment variable...I'm not sure which one, but I imagine
> others can tell you.
> In that directory, there will be, for example, a subdirectory named
> "Pacific", and in that subdirectory, there will be a file named
> "Honolulu".  That's the time zone binary for Hawaii.
> If a time zone name has three elements, that just indicates
> another level of subdirectories.  For example, America has
> four subdirectories, Argentina, Indiana, Kentucky, and
> North_Dakota.  North_Dakota contains two files, Center
> and New_Salem.
> TZ gurus:  did I get all that right?
Yes - that is the basic structure as I understand it.

The scheme is analogous to the scheme adopted by terminfo for terminals, and
similar hierarchical schemes are used in CPAN (Comprehensive Perl Archive
Network) and other places too.

Jonathan Leffler <jonathan.leffler at gmail.com>  #include <disclaimer.h>
Guardian of DBD::Informix - v2008.0513 - http://dbi.perl.org
"Blessed are we who can laugh at ourselves, for we shall never cease to be
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