TZ database content

Syed Sajjath Syed.Sajjath at
Fri Feb 9 17:32:02 UTC 2001

I have a request regarding zone names.  It would be very helpful for me if
there is a separate file with
Country Name,
Zone  short name (like ET),
Zone Long Name(Eastern Time),
Zone Summer short Name(EDT),
Zone Summer Long Name (Eastern DayLight Time),
Zone standard short Name(EST),
Zone standard Long Name(Eastern Standard Time)
GMT Offset (Standard)
Currently used indicator (this will indicate if the timezone is just for
historical purposes)

Even though Zone names are not standard, our tz list can agree upon some
standard names and use the same abbreviations.  I am sure there are others
also who are interested in such a file.  I will gladly volunteer some of my
time to prepare the initial file, if the list agrees that this is an useful
feature, and any future changes to tzdata will be reflected in this file
also.  Each timezone abbreviation used in the tzdata must be the same as
Zone Short Name of the reference file.

P.S. The above file format makes it easy for me to load the file straight
onto my application database.  Suggestions are welcome.  I also understand
that this may not be the part of the original intention (can someone also
please explain what the aim of tz database is), but all the same it will be
very useful for folks who need the data in database format and write their
own functions to interpret it.

  -----Original Message-----
  From: Srinivas Nagaraj [mailto:srinivas at]
  Sent: Friday, February 09, 2001 11:03 AM
  To: Time Zone Mailing List (E-mail)
  Subject: TZ database content

  The TZ (zoneinfo) database comes installed with several operating
  systems like Linux, Solaris, etc.

  I have noticed the content of the TZ database varies between different
  versions of the same operating system and also between operating
  systems.  This could have been because of when a snapshot of the
  TZ database was taken.

  Ofcourse, one significant difference is the actual name of the time zone.
  Depending on the content of the TZ database, the time zone name look
  different.  Is it because the TZ database has evolved?

  I also noticed that the file is not distributed on a number of
  installations.  Was that operating system installation decision?

  Now my main question, is it an appropriate application specific common
  practice to use an application specific TZ database?  That way the
  time zone names can be consistent, irrespective of where the application
  is installed?

  Thank you.

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