[tz] Greetings from Mongolia

Paul Ganssle pganssle at gmail.com
Sat Jul 4 00:40:22 UTC 2015

Why don't MS and Oracle use the IANA tz file? Seems like a waste of effort.
Surely they at least crib the IANA for hints on updates.
On Jul 3, 2015 8:32 PM, "Brian Inglis" <Brian.Inglis at systematicsw.ab.ca>

> On 2015-07-03 08:45, Paul Eggert wrote:
>> amgalan tsogtgerel wrote:
>>> the CRC has sent you official letter dated  15th June 2015 to you for
>>> your support on above mentioned issue and we  have  not received any
>>> response from you yet.
>> I twice replied via email to crc at mongol.net, the email address mentioned
>> in that official letter.  Perhaps you're not getting those emails?  Anyway,
>> at the risk of repeating myself:
>> Although the tz project and the IANA are doing their job, Apple and
>> Google and etc. have messed up in Mongolia.  I suggest that you write about
>> this to Apple and Google and etc.; possibly you'll have more influence on
>> them than I do. Please feel free to quote this email, particularly
>> paragraph (B) below.  I suggest also writing to the part of the Mongolian
>> government responsible for daylight-saving time and mentioning paragraph
>> (A).
>  Before talking about how to fix things, let me describe how the process
>> worked and/or is not working:
>> 1.  The Mongolian government decided on 2015-03-09 to use daylight saving
>> time starting 2015-03-28 03:00 local time.
>> 2.  Ganbold Tsagaankhuu (affiliation unknown) privately sent me email
>> dated 2015-03-10 notifying me of the change.
>> 3.  We published an experimental patch dated 2015-03-10 00:03:48 -0700
>> containing the change; you can see its archived announcement at <
>> http://mm.icann.org/pipermail/tz/2015-March/022073.html>.
>> 4.  We published an official release 2015b dated 2015-03-19 23:28:11 2015
>> -0700 containing the change; you can see its archived announcement at <
>> http://mm.icann.org/pipermail/tz-announce/2015-March/000029.html>.
>> 5.  Suppliers of operating systems eventually pick up these changes and
>> release new operating system releases and/or patches to their existing
>> systems.  Known operating systems include GNU/Linux distributions like Red
>> Hat and Ubuntu, and many other systems including Android (Google), Firefox
>> OS, FreeBSD, NetBSD, OpenBSD, Cygwin, DJGPP, MINIX, webOS (LG), AIX (IBM),
>> BlackBerry 10, iOS (Apple), Microsoft Windows, OpenVMS (HP), Oracle
>> Database, Oracle Solaris, and OS X (Apple).  (There are undoubtedly other
>> operating systems that we don't know about.)  From the above examples, we
>> know that Android and iOS have not been updated, whereas Red Hat and
>> Solaris and Ubuntu have been.
>> 6.  Users of these operating systems eventually install patches to bring
>> their systems up to date.  For proprietary systems this often requires
>> support contracts.
>> Steps (5) and (6) haven't been completed properly in Mongolia; that is,
>> the Mongolian systems in question are like my older server at work (where
>> step (6) hasn't been done), or are like Apple or Android cell phones (where
>> step (5) hasn't been done).
>  Here are some ways to improve this process the next time the Mongolian
>> government changes its time zone rules.
>> A.  The Mongolian government can announce the change well before it
>> occurs. Eighteen days is not enough.  I suggest six months or more.  The
>> last time the rules were changed in the US, the federal government gave
>> nineteen months' notice.
>> B.  Operating system suppliers can be more timely about propagating the
>> changes to their operating systems.  My desktop contains all the changes of
>> tz release 2015d (dated April 24); why doesn't my cell phone?  Apple and
>> Google should have the current tz version in their current cell phone
>> releases and should send over-the-air patches in a timely way.
>> C.  Operating system users in Mongolia can be more diligent about
>> installing patches.  Users regularly employing over-the-network updates
>> (which is good practice anyway) should have no problems.
>> D.  The Internet Engineering Task Force has drafted the specifications
>> for a time zone data distribution service that should automate steps (B)
>> and (C) more rapidly.  See
>> <https://tools.ietf.org/html/draft-ietf-tzdist-service-09>
>> (2015-06-29).  My impression is that Apple will implement this service, and
>> perhaps other suppliers will do something similar.  However, it's just a
>> draft and is not widely implemented so this is somewhat speculative.
>> PS.  This problem is not unique to Mongolia.  We have similar problems in
>> Uruguay later this year (fix not yet officially released), in Egypt this
>> year (fixed in tz release 2015d dated 2015-04-24 08:09:46 -0700), in Chile
>> and Mexico this year (fixed in tz release 2015a dated 2015-01-29 22:35:20
>> -0800), etc.>
> See https://support.microsoft.com/en-ca/gp/cp_dst for MS policy requiring
> 4-6 months notice prior to December annual or August/September interim tz
> updates.
> Other MS changes may be released as retail updates or downloadable
> hotfixes depending probably on official support requests.
> MS does not use IANA tz info so official letters should also be copied to
> MS; some DB and development product vendors also do not use IANA tz info,
> so e.g. Oracle should also be copied to update DBs and Java; add other
> product vendors and orgs which you find using outdated info.
> --
> Take care. Thanks, Brian Inglis
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