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#1 2014-04-01 21:14:07

Jerome
Member
Registered: 2011-07-21
Posts: 10

Setting user timezone

Hi.

I configured a PC for a friend who's been travelling and she asked me how to change the time on the computer. I suppose it makes would sense to do that as a user, not as an admin. Actually both make sense, but I'm looking for a user solution here.

I expected to find something in the parameter manager, but found nothing.

However, there seems to be something hidden in orage clock. Global time. It opens a really small window with a settings menu where a timezone can be picked.

Is this meant for that ? Is it documented ? Does it display a clock with a chosen timezone, or does it actually change the time user-wide for all applications ?

I admit my request is unclear as I mix up absolute time and local time, and I don't really know what the need exactly is, but I think you see the idea.

I heard that Gnome Shell clock util and KDE's clock address this, although I don't have the detail.

Bottom line, the issue is: I'd expect to find a clock setting in the parameter manager GUI and I didn't. Do I miss a package ? Is this normal ? Should we add something there ? What ? How ?

I know the timezone can be changed by adding

TZ='Europe/Berlin'; export TZ

to

~/.profile

(requires session restart)

The value could be obtained by the same tree view that is used in the timezone picker I was refering to earlier.

Any hint anyone ?

Thanks.

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#2 2014-04-01 23:40:58

ToZ
Moderator
From: Toronto, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-02
Posts: 1,177

Re: Setting user timezone

You can use the Orage Panel Plugin to display the time for a different timezone as a plugin that sits in the panel. It doesn't change the system time, just allows you to display the time from a different timezone. In fact, you can add multiple copies of this plugin to display time from differing timezones. (In fact, Orage has much more functionality than just time display. Here is a good document that shows more of its functionality).

If you want the user to change the system date/time, you can install "system-config-date" (should be in your distro's repositories) and setup sudo to allow the user to run this particular app without a password. This app will also add a date/time icon in the Settings Manager for easier access.

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#3 2014-04-02 14:48:13

Jerome
Member
Registered: 2011-07-21
Posts: 10

Re: Setting user timezone

Hi, thank you for your answer.

So there is a way to display the time for any timezone in the Orage clock. And there is a system config GUI that can be added to the Settings Manager for users with appropriate credentials.

However, there is no way to set the timezone user-widely, which is what I understood "TZ='Europe/Berlin'; export TZ" does. I don't know if this is so useful, anyway. I can't think of many program actually using this.

Well, in fact, the alarms generated by Orage itself should probably be timed on this. Maybe they are relative to system time, but I believe they should depend on user timezone. I also use (and used to contribute to) gbirthday, which needs date/time as well.

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#4 2014-04-02 18:04:46

ToZ
Moderator
From: Toronto, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-02
Posts: 1,177

Re: Setting user timezone

However, there is no way to set the timezone user-widely, which is what I understood "TZ='Europe/Berlin'; export TZ" does.

Yes, system-config-date will do this for you. Or if you prefer to do it manually, you can change the file that /etc/localtime links to (or in the case of Ubuntu, it seems to be a straight copy, not a link). For example (Arch Linux, current timezone=Canada/Eastern):

sudo rm /etc/localtime
sudo ln -s /usr/share/zoneinfo/Canada/Pacific /etc/localtime

...changes my timezone to Canada/Pacific and changes my system time.

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#5 2014-04-02 20:55:50

Jerome
Member
Registered: 2011-07-21
Posts: 10

Re: Setting user timezone

Yes, but this is sytem-wide, not what I'd call "user-wide": all softwares for a given user.

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#6 2014-04-03 01:01:29

MountainDewManiac
Member
From: USA police-state welfare-state
Registered: 2013-03-24
Posts: 286

Re: Setting user timezone

It seems sensible to me that time/date settings be system-wide rather than on a per-user basis. After all, when people take their computer with them to a different time-zone, most of them (all, AFAIK, lol) take the whole computer - not just their particular "home" directory.

Btw, I'm surprised that things aren't advanced enough by this point for a computer to figure out local time automatically whenever it accesses the Internet. Also, since it's a linux OS, that a person cannot simply open a terminal and set the time with a command (such as time, settime, or similar)... But I'd expect even that to require an administrator password.

Regards,
MDM

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