Just ran Y2K test on my computer

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I just ran tests from 2 separate sources on this pc. One that I got from ZDNet and one from Norton (Symantec). Each test checked for compliance of RTC, BIOS, and leap year. The ZDNet product said I was OK on all except RTC. It returned a 1900 year instead of 2000. The Norton product said all items including RTC were OK. ROFLMAO!

Geez, what's the point

MoVe Immediate

-- MVI (vtoc@aol.com), December 21, 1998


More info needed.

What operating system were you running? For example, Microsoft claims that Windows NT (and Windows 98, I believe) will recognize the "invalid" RTC date because of the century bit not being set in the BIOS and move the date up to the new millenium.

For software like old versions of Windows and DOS, a "TSR" is required to reset the date after reboot. In effect, Win NT and Win 98 "recognize" the invalid date problem and adjust, DOS and older versions of Windows don't.

So, Norton could be "correct" in the fact that the OS "fixed" the date problem, or if checks were performed at an OS level instead of a BIOS/RTC level, then it might not even know.

Glen Austin

-- Glen Austin (gdaustin@aol.com), December 21, 1998.

HELP! I received an e-mail from Microsoft giving me a website to check on my compliancy but it got lost in all the paperwork on my desk! Would someone who has Windows98 please e-mail the site to me?

A complete computer idjit,


-- Floridagirl (Fran44@aol.com), December 21, 1998.

Will it accept a Year 2000 date (I assumed the tests you conducted were rollover). If it does you can reset the date in Year 2000 (if necessary).

-- Richard Dale (rdale@figroup.co.uk), December 21, 1998.

Much ado about nothing. Look, all you really care about is whether or not you can set the date to 1-1-2000 and it will stay the same if you shut the machine off. So set the date and shut the machine off. If its the same date when you start back up you are fine. Only other thing to watch out for is whether or not the clock gets funny over time - so wait and see. Also - you might check to see if there is a 2/29/2000 as a valid date - otherwise you will be a day behind or ahead on leap year day.

-- Paul Davis (davisp1953@yahoo.com), December 21, 1998.

Foridagirl, here's microsoft's y2k page, with downloads and info for Win98


-- Chris (catsy@pond.com), December 21, 1998.

Depending on your application, a non-complaint real time clock might cause big problems. Although most applications get their time from the operating system, or from the BIOS, there are a few that go directly to the RTC for this. (The QNX operating system, used for real time manufacturing applications, does this.)

You need to first determing what is and what is not Y2K compliant on your PC at the level of hardware, firmware, and operating system. Then you need to take a good look at your applications. Then you need to look at the data. Then you need to consider whether you are sharing data (e.g., over a network).

A really good article that explains all this (even though its oriented towards Mac users), using the analogy of each level being represented as a layer of a cake, with each layer proportionately sized to how much of a Y2K headache all this is, can be found at:

Y2K Layers on a PC or Mac

-- Jack (jsprat@eld.net), December 21, 1998.

To all who would run a Y2K test on your computers:

Please make a full backup of all your software and data before running any Y2K test. Also, do not run any Y2K test until you know how to, and have practiced at least once, restoring all your software and data from backup.

-- No Spam Please (anon@ymous.com), December 21, 1998.

I wasn't looking for advice. I just thought it was funny (ironic) that I got different results.

MoVe Immediate

-- MVI (vtoc@aol.com), December 21, 1998.

True. You were pointing out a valid problem reported between two tests.

But its estimated that for each person, such as you, who reports or answers a problem, there are 97-99 lurkers who don't. Many, given the increase in y2K awareness, won't be as careful as you imply you were.

So it helps to remind the "unseen but important" bunch of invisible lurkers out there of the background info you may assume everyone knows. Despite the news media's misdirection, there are many more problems in PC's than just the "will it turn over from 12/31 to 01/01" problem.

Most significant, of course, is the "will my applications still process "whatever date it is" correctly" question. Then second question is: will I be able to run the computer? then: will still have a job and a salary to as a reason run the computer?

-- Robert A. Cook, P.E. (Kennesaw GA) (cook.r@csaatl.com), December 21, 1998.

Sir, Your observations that you recieved two different test results really bring the real story forward. In Y2K, there are two main issues-1)technical( will my system work in full compliance?)and 2)legal ( how do I prove compliance, assign proper liability, and guard against lawsuits should my systems fail?) The reason you are seeing two different results rests in the fact that there is no compliance standard in the U.S. so therefore compliance statements and testing software are in themselves suspect, and not all tests are created equal. The groundrules in PC or mainframe testing should be: Isolate, Test,Remediate using O.E.M. supplied patches, and Document everything you do in writing. And yes, the RTC matters, and never simply roll forward your clocks. 93% of PC's that fail will fail "powered on", and between 3 and 5% "powered off".You should only test in DOS, never Windows, and on an isolated separate bootable floppy. Only you can determine, of course, whether you are in a situation where the failure of your PC jeopardizes your ability to meet your obligations, but you may find your bank or insurance company demanding written documentation of compliance shortly, and you do not want to find yourself without written recourse should you be named as part of a lawsuit on the part of a supplier, vendor, or customer. In Y2K, what you don't find, fix, and document will bite you.

-- Ron Hazard (ronh@pcsolutions 2000.com), December 21, 1998.

Mr Cook, If I came across as ungrateful or self centered, my apology please.

The following response by Mr Ron Hazard sums up what I was trying to suggest in my post:

"The reason you are seeing two different results rests in the fact that there is no compliance standard in the U.S. so therefore compliance statements and testing software are in themselves suspect, and not all tests are created equal."

The brevity and lack of conciseness of my communications (assumption that the reader is in my head) and the willingness of others to fill in the blanks, has on occasion caused problems for me.

Thanks to all for their response.

MoVe Immediate

-- MVI (vtoc@aol.com), December 21, 1998.

there are many more problems in PC's than just the "will it turn over from 12/31 to 01/01" problem.

Most significant, of course, is the "will my applications still process "whatever date it is"

Yes of course application and packaged software is where the major problem lies. In our experience at FI we did find most of the PCs would accpet Year 2000 dates, even though not all of them rolled over correctly.

BTW we've just conducted a Year 2000 test on the resume scanning process of a well-known human resource package (US built). It failed, even though only a single date field was processed. The y2k version is supposedly fully tested by the vendor and in production on some sites. The remainder of the system (with much complicated date processing) works fine, they must have forgot to test this function.

It did not recognise a Year 2000 date (field was blanked out), could not be overtyped either. The date field was stored as blanks on the record and this is a protected field.

-- Richard Dale (rdale@figroup.co.uk), December 21, 1998.


-- Waiting (Waitingfortheend@aol.com), December 21, 1998.

They can't fix it from up there either - we got the heavens so confused back in the 1st, 5th, 10th, and 16th centuries - now nobody knows what it is date in which calender for which continent. Besides, the cosmos uses the solar year, the Venusian day, and the Martian month - cause Venus doesn't have a moon - (Now, which Mars moon I'm not sure of....)

Anyway - identifying and fixing PC's is difficult enough as is without introducing stellar superstars.

-- Robert A. Cook, P.E. (Kennesaw GA) (cook.r@csaatl.com), December 21, 1998.

Oh Lordy,

I don't care if my PC fails...just keep the power on for mankind.!

-- (@ .com), December 21, 1998.

Check out www.rightime.com and get the freeware called year2000.zip. It fixes most BIOS problems and they also have a free testing program called test2000.zip which checks for basic rollover and leap year issues. Run it first to see if the year2000.zip file will help you or not. It fixed mine but some BIOS's will need vendor upgrades. NOTE: patching in Y2K fixes isn't as "clean" as installing a fully compliant BIOS and RTC and would lead to problems with applications that bypass the BIOS and go directly to the RTC for time and date.* Also, get w95filup.exe (Win95) or w31filup.exe (Win31)from ftp.microsoft.com/ something or other to fix file manager y2k bugs in both of these OS's. According to Microsoft, these patches should make your version of Windows y2k compliant. After that, all(!) you have to do is check every single one of your applications and databases for their own Y2K problems but at least you'll have a compliant computer to work from.

*At least, that's what I read somewhere and I'm not exactly an alpha-geek so what do I know? ;-)

-- Tim Allen (uuhh?) (tool@time.com), December 21, 1998.

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