OT: To Forum Regulars: Strange things happening with my computer's clock.

greenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

I just noticed that my computer's clock has lost a half-hour in the past day. It was not without power at any time during the past 48 hours.

Anybody have ANY idea what's going on with it? This has never happened to me before!


-- sweetpea (on@the.farm), December 23, 1999


Me too!!! Except mine has lost time a little bit each day until I finally fixed it yesterday....weird. Just a coincidence. Maybe.

-- Metoo (metoo@house.net), December 23, 1999.

Time dilation (TD) effect???

-- TD (heard@this.before), December 23, 1999.

Your CMOS battery might need replacing.

-- gary elliott (gelliott@real.on.ca), December 23, 1999.

What motherboards are y'all using? You might want to check out whether there's a BIOS fix for it in case it's some sort of BIOS problem. If it's a RTC problem, I smell a motherboard replacement or some sort of Y2K workaround in your (immediate) future...

For everyone else, check the website for the manufacturer of your motherboard (if you built the box or had it built for you, custom) or machine (if it's an off-the-shelf or mail-ordered box) and see if there are any BIOS updates and/or Y2K newsflashes. Most new motherboards (from about 1998 on) and ready-made systems are either ready from the word "go" or might need to have a BIOS update put in to achieve board-level Y2K compliance.

If you -do- have to update your BIOS, READ THE DIRECTIONS AND FOLLOW THEM PRECISELY!!! If you don't, you could end up with an unbootable machine!

O d d O n e, who has a once-a-month ritual of downloading and updating all hardware drivers including BIOS updates, and updating his backup set to suit...

-- OddOne (mocklamer_1999@yahoo.com), December 23, 1999.

Sounds like a Y2K problem.

-- (BrianM@harting.net), December 23, 1999.


What OS are you running? I've got Win98 on my computer at work and every time I reboot the clock reads 12:00am, and I get a message saying that my system has made the necessary corrections for Daylight Savings Time. But when I click on the OK button for the message the clock automatically changes to the correct time. The date is never affected.

I would presume that this is just another bug in the Microsoft OS. You may have something similar happening to your machine. Although a nusiance, it's not harming anything. I would call your tech support people to get a better handle on it. Maybe there is a patch that can fix it, or maybe you just have something configured wrong. But I think the best advice is to get one of your tech guys on the phone and have him/her walk you through the problem.

-- (just@another.programmer), December 23, 1999.

My motherboard is an Astoria that allegedly passed inspection in this 18 month old computer. Does that help?

I've had major computer problems in the past. Don't tell me I'm headed for more?

Please tell me this isn't Y2k related.

-- sweetpea (on@the.farm), December 23, 1999.

I'm running Windows 95.

-- sweetpea (on@the.farm), December 23, 1999.

Mine has been losing a couple of hours a day for quite awhile. I suspected the battery, but haven't yet replaced it. If I do something where timestamps will matter, I set it, if not, I just look better in the eyes of others that see me up and working at 3:00am.

-- BH (bh_silentvoice@hotmail.com), December 23, 1999.

I posted a similar question to usenet c.s.y2k and got virtually no response. On 9/9/99 my computer lost time, and has continued to have problems since then. I've patched, upgraded, etc. to no avail. It appears to be a Win95/98 problem, not a BIOS problem. The day after, my husband's computer lost time. His loses time less frequently, however his pc is not used as much as mine so perhaps this is a factor. His pc is running Win95 and mine is Win95 upgraded to 98. It's an annoying problem and doesn't make me optimistic about Y2K.

-- pilotrn (pilotrn@hotmail.com), December 23, 1999.

Try this site for BIOS info and Slowdown of your computers Clock..


Download the FREE BIOS check and the audit...


-- BLUE (Bluefish@thepond.com), December 23, 1999.


Gotta agree with earlier post. Almost certain its your CMOS battery. Back up your files ASAP & your BIOS data, then have battery replaced....

-- RJ (LtPita@aol.com), December 23, 1999.

Thanks all!

Three Questions:

1) If it's my CMOS battery, and it completely dies before I have a chance to replace it--what happens to my computer?

2) This computer is only 18 months old. Why would the battery go bad so soon? My other "pooters" never had this problem.

3) Can I replace the battery myself?


-- sweet pea (on@the.farm), December 23, 1999.

First, I have checked with manufacturer and the bios are ok. I run Windows 98. A few weeks back, mine did that for about three days. It always reset to the correct time on re-boot. Now It doesn't have that problem anymore. I do suspect it is a y2k problem with the OS as so many of us are having it.

-- marsh (armstrng@sisqtel.net), December 23, 1999.


I concur that the battery is a prime suspect, although at 18 months of age, it should still be ok.

You can change the battery yourself. However, after changing it, you will need to manually enter some CMOS info that will be lost during the change. Time and date, for example. What other info might need to be entered I cannot say. For example, way back when, you would need to enter disk drive parameters, but newer disk drives commonly remember that internally. You might get tips on the subject from your dealer or the manufacturer.


-- Jerry B (skeptic76@erols.com), December 23, 1999.


If everything has been fine, and this just started, chances are it is the battery.

If the battery dies, CMOS won't remember your configuration when you turn off the 'puter. The date and time will be lost, and other information, like the type of hard disk that you have, and some other options that you can change with your setup program. On almost all machines, this is no big deal, as long as you know what to do.

Most machines will tell you to run setup if the battery fails, but you should know how to anyway. It's usually the DEL key, or F1, maybe CTL+ALT+ESC, there is no standard. Watch for a message when you first turn it on, or look in the manual for your motherboard.

Once you're in setup, make a note of the settings. You may not need them, but it may come in handy, if something "doesn't work right" later.

Now, if the battery does fail, go to setup, auto-detect the hard drive (most machines do this, if not set it from your notes), and set the date and time. This is usually enough to get you going, but you may wish to verify the other options, with your notes. You'll need to do this at least once, when you replace the battery, and every time you turn on the machine, 'til you do.

Replacing the battery is USUALLY easy. The important thing is to get the correct replacement! Some machines have have a clip on the mother board, that holds down the battery, about the size of a nickel or dime. Some have a "jumper" on the motherboard, where you plug in an external battery. Some have the battery soldered on the board, but most of these also have the jumper, so you can hook-up external when the on-board battery dies. Again, no standard. Check the manual, or give the folks where you bought it a call, if you have any problems. <:)=

-- Sysman (y2kboard@yahoo.com), December 23, 1999.

PS - and a few safety reminders.

Any time that you take the cover off, UNPLUG!

Be careful of static, when poking around. Not as much for your safety, but for your 'puters! Invest in a wrist strap, or at least try to keep some skin on a metal part of the frame. <:)=

-- Sysman (y2kboard@yahoo.com), December 23, 1999.


You sure saved me alot of typing! I was about to offer up the same advice. One more thing, though Sweetpea. When you replace the battery, make sure to buy one with the correct voltage. Look in the manual for the motherboard. It should range somewhere from 3.0 to 4.5 depending on what kind of system that you have. And be sure to unplug your system before attempting to change any hardware.

As for the OS. I searched Microsoft's knowledge base and called another MSCE friend of mine. Never heard of time problems with WIN95/98/NT.

-- LZach (lisa@texasnetworks.com), December 24, 1999.


Having a computer battery go dead so soon is not that unusual. I had to replace a battery in a Hewlett Packard computer when it was about 15 months old. I asked the HW people about it and they said that it does happen sometimes.

-- M.S. (missouri@yahoo.com), December 24, 1999.

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