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ZIC

NAME
SYNOPSIS
DESCRIPTION
OPTIONS
EXTENDED EXAMPLE
FILES
NOTES
SEE ALSO

NAME

zic − timezone compiler

SYNOPSIS

zic [ option ... ] [ filename ... ]

DESCRIPTION

The zic program reads text from the file(s) named on the command line and creates the time conversion information files specified in this input. If a filename is “-”, standard input is read.

OPTIONS

--version

Output version information and exit.

--help

Output short usage message and exit.

-d directory

Create time conversion information files in the named directory rather than in the standard directory named below.

-l timezone

Use timezone as local time. zic will act as if the input contained a link line of the form

Link timezone localtime

-p timezone

Use timezone’s rules when handling POSIX-format timezone environment variables. zic will act as if the input contained a link line of the form

Link timezone posixrules

-t file

When creating local time information, put the configuration link in the named file rather than in the standard location.

-L leapsecondfilename

Read leap second information from the file with the given name. If this option is not used, no leap second information appears in output files.

-v

Be more verbose, and complain about the following situations:

The input specifies a link to a link.

A year that appears in a data file is outside the range of years representable by time(2) values.

A time of 24:00 or more appears in the input. Pre-1998 versions of zic prohibit 24:00, and pre-2007 versions prohibit times greater than 24:00.

A rule goes past the start or end of the month. Pre-2004 versions of zic prohibit this.

The output file does not contain all the information about the long-term future of a timezone, because the future cannot be summarized as an extended POSIX TZ string. For example, as of 2013 this problem occurs for Iran’s daylight-saving rules for the predicted future, as these rules are based on the Iranian calendar, which cannot be represented.

The output contains data that may not be handled properly by client code designed for older zic output formats. These compatibility issues affect only timestamps before 1970 or after the start of 2038.

A time zone abbreviation has fewer than 3 characters. POSIX requires at least 3.

An output file name contains a byte that is not an ASCII letter, “-”, “/”, or “_”; or it contains a file name component that contains more than 14 bytes or that starts with “-”.

-s

Limit time values stored in output files to values that are the same whether they’re taken to be signed or unsigned. You can use this option to generate SVVS-compatible files.

Input files should be text files, that is, they should be a series of zero or more lines, each ending in a newline byte and containing at most 511 bytes, and without any NUL bytes. The input text’s encoding is typically UTF-8 or ASCII; it should have a unibyte representation for the POSIX Portable Character Set (PPCS) ⟨http://pubs.opengroup.org/ onlinepubs/9699919799/basedefs/V1_chap06.html⟩ and the encoding’s non-unibyte characters should consist entirely of non-PPCS bytes. Non-PPCS characters typically occur only in comments: although output file names and time zone abbreviations can contain nearly any character, other software will work better if these are limited to the restricted syntax described under the -v option.

Input lines are made up of fields. Fields are separated from one another by one or more white space characters. The white space characters are space, form feed, carriage return, newline, tab, and vertical tab. Leading and trailing white space on input lines is ignored. An unquoted sharp character (#) in the input introduces a comment which extends to the end of the line the sharp character appears on. White space characters and sharp characters may be enclosed in double quotes (") if they’re to be used as part of a field. Any line that is blank (after comment stripping) is ignored. Nonblank lines are expected to be of one of three types: rule lines, zone lines, and link lines.

Names must be in English and are case insensitive. They appear in several contexts, and include month and weekday names and keywords such as maximum, only, Rolling, and Zone. A name can be abbreviated by omitting all but an initial prefix; any abbreviation must be unambiguous in context.

A rule line has the form

Rule NAME FROM TO TYPE IN ON AT SAVE LETTER/S

For example:

Rule

US

1967

1973

-

Apr

lastSun

2:00w

1:00d

D

The fields that make up a rule line are:

NAME

Gives the name of the rule set that contains this line. The name must start with a character that is neither an ASCII digit nor “-” nor “+”. To allow for future extensions, an unquoted name should not contain characters from the set “!$%&’()*,/:;<=>?@[\]^‘{|}~”.

FROM

Gives the first year in which the rule applies. Any signed integer year can be supplied; the proleptic Gregorian calendar is assumed, with year 0 preceding year 1. The word minimum (or an abbreviation) means the indefinite past. The word maximum (or an abbreviation) means the indefinite future. Rules can describe times that are not representable as time values, with the unrepresentable times ignored; this allows rules to be portable among hosts with differing time value types.

TO

Gives the final year in which the rule applies. In addition to minimum and maximum (as above), the word only (or an abbreviation) may be used to repeat the value of the FROM field.

TYPE

should be “-” and is present for compatibility with older versions of zic in which it could contain year types.

IN

Names the month in which the rule takes effect. Month names may be abbreviated.

ON

Gives the day on which the rule takes effect. Recognized forms include:

5 the fifth of the month

lastSun

the last Sunday in the month

lastMon

the last Monday in the month

Sun>=8

first Sunday on or after the eighth

Sun<=25

last Sunday on or before the 25th

A weekday name (e.g., Sunday) or a weekday name preceded by “last” (e.g., lastSunday) may be abbreviated or spelled out in full. Note that there must be no spaces within the ON field.

AT

Gives the time of day at which the rule takes effect, relative to 00:00, the start of a calendar day. Recognized forms include:

2 time in hours

2:00

time in hours and minutes

01:28:14

time in hours, minutes, and seconds

00:19:32.13

time with fractional seconds

12:00

midday, 12 hours after 00:00

15:00

3 PM, 15 hours after 00:00

24:00

end of day, 24 hours after 00:00

260:00

260 hours after 00:00

-2:30

2.5 hours before 00:00

-

equivalent to 0

Although zic rounds times to the nearest integer second (breaking ties to the even integer), the fractions may be useful to other applications requiring greater precision. The source format does not specify any maximum precision. Any of these forms may be followed by the letter w if the given time is local “wall clock” time, s if the given time is local “standard” time, or u (or g or z) if the given time is universal time; in the absence of an indicator, wall clock time is assumed. These forms ignore leap seconds; for example, if a leap second occurs at 00:59:60 local time, “1:00” stands for 3601 seconds after local midnight instead of the usual 3600 seconds. The intent is that a rule line describes the instants when a clock/calendar set to the type of time specified in the AT field would show the specified date and time of day.

SAVE

Gives the amount of time to be added to local standard time when the rule is in effect, and whether the resulting time is standard or daylight saving. This field has the same format as the AT field except with a different set of suffix letters: s for standard time and d for daylight saving time. The suffix letter is typically omitted, and defaults to s if the offset is zero and to d otherwise. Negative offsets are allowed; in Ireland, for example, daylight saving time is observed in winter and has a negative offset relative to Irish Standard Time. The offset is merely added to standard time; for example, zic does not distinguish a 10:30 standard time plus an 0:30 SAVE from a 10:00 standard time plus a 1:00 SAVE.

LETTER/S

Gives the “variable part” (for example, the “S” or “D” in “EST” or “EDT”) of time zone abbreviations to be used when this rule is in effect. If this field is “-”, the variable part is null.

A zone line has the form

Zone NAME UTOFF RULES FORMAT [UNTIL]

For example:

Zone

Asia/Amman

2:00

Jordan

EE%sT

2017 Oct 27 01:00

The fields that make up a zone line are:

NAME

The name of the timezone. This is the name used in creating the time conversion information file for the timezone. It should not contain a file name component “.” or “..”; a file name component is a maximal substring that does not contain “/”.

UTOFF

The amount of time to add to UT to get standard time. This field has the same format as the AT and SAVE fields of rule lines; begin the field with a minus sign if time must be subtracted from UT.

RULES

The name of the rules that apply in the timezone or, alternatively, a field in the same format as a rule-line SAVE column, giving of the amount of time to be added to local standard time effect, and whether the resulting time is standard or daylight saving. If this field is - then standard time always applies. When an amount of time is given, only the sum of standard time and this amount matters.

FORMAT

The format for time zone abbreviations. The pair of characters %s is used to show where the “variable part” of the time zone abbreviation goes. Alternatively, a format can use the pair of characters %z to stand for the UT offset in the form ±hh, ±hhmm, or ±hhmmss, using the shortest form that does not lose information, where hh, mm, and ss are the hours, minutes, and seconds east (+) or west (−) of UT. Alternatively, a slash (/) separates standard and daylight abbreviations. To conform to POSIX, a time zone abbreviation should contain only alphanumeric ASCII characters, “+” and “-”.

UNTIL

The time at which the UT offset or the rule(s) change for a location. It takes the form of YEAR [MONTH [DAY [TIME]]]. If this is specified, the time zone information is generated from the given UT offset and rule change until the time specified, which is interpreted using the rules in effect just before the transition. The month, day, and time of day have the same format as the IN, ON, and AT fields of a rule; trailing fields can be omitted, and default to the earliest possible value for the missing fields.

The next line must be a “continuation” line; this has the same form as a zone line except that the string “Zone” and the name are omitted, as the continuation line will place information starting at the time specified as the “until” information in the previous line in the file used by the previous line. Continuation lines may contain “until” information, just as zone lines do, indicating that the next line is a further continuation.

If a zone changes at the same instant that a rule would otherwise take effect in the earlier zone or continuation line, the rule is ignored. In a single zone it is an error if two rules take effect at the same instant, or if two zone changes take effect at the same instant.

A link line has the form

Link TARGET LINK-NAME

For example:

Link

Europe/Istanbul

Asia/Istanbul

The TARGET field should appear as the NAME field in some zone line. The LINK-NAME field is used as an alternative name for that zone; it has the same syntax as a zone line’s NAME field.

Except for continuation lines, lines may appear in any order in the input. However, the behavior is unspecified if multiple zone or link lines define the same name, or if the source of one link line is the target of another.

Lines in the file that describes leap seconds have the following form:

Leap

YEAR

MONTH

DAY

HH:MM:SS

CORR

R/S

For example:

Leap

2016

Dec

31

23:59:60

+

S

The YEAR, MONTH, DAY, and HH:MM:SS fields tell when the leap second happened. The CORR field should be “+” if a second was added or “-” if a second was skipped. The R/S field should be (an abbreviation of) “Stationary” if the leap second time given by the other fields should be interpreted as UTC or (an abbreviation of) “Rolling” if the leap second time given by the other fields should be interpreted as local wall clock time.

EXTENDED EXAMPLE

Here is an extended example of zic input, intended to illustrate many of its features. In this example, the EU rules are for the European Union and for its predecessor organization, the European Communities.

# Rule

NAME

FROM

TO

TYPE

IN

ON

AT

SAVE

LETTER/S

Rule

Swiss

1941

1942

-

May

Mon>=1

1:00

1:00

S

Rule

Swiss

1941

1942

-

Oct

Mon>=1

2:00

0

-

Rule

EU

1977

1980

-

Apr

Sun>=1

1:00u

1:00

S

Rule

EU

1977

only

-

Sep

lastSun

1:00u

0

-

Rule

EU

1978

only

-

Oct

1

1:00u

0

-

Rule

EU

1979

1995

-

Sep

lastSun

1:00u

0

-

Rule

EU

1981

max

-

Mar

lastSun

1:00u

1:00

S

Rule

EU

1996

max

-

Oct

lastSun

1:00u

0

-

# Zone

NAME

UTOFF

RULES

FORMAT

[UNTIL]

Zone

Europe/Zurich

0:34:08

-

LMT

1853 Jul 16

0:29:46

-

BMT

1894 Jun

1:00

Swiss

CE%sT

1981

1:00

EU

CE%sT

Link

Europe/Zurich

Europe/Vaduz

In this example, the timezone is named Europe/Zurich but it has an alias as Europe/Vaduz. This example says that Zurich was 34 minutes and 8 seconds east of UT until 1853-07-16 at 00:00, when the legal offset was changed to 7°26′22.50″; although this works out to 0:29:45.50, the input format cannot represent fractional seconds so it is rounded here. After 1894-06-01 at 00:00 the UT offset became one hour and Swiss daylight saving rules (defined with lines beginning with “Rule Swiss”) apply. From 1981 to the present, EU daylight saving rules have applied, and the UTC offset has remained at one hour.

In 1941 and 1942, daylight saving time applied from the first Monday in May at 01:00 to the first Monday in October at 02:00. The pre-1981 EU daylight-saving rules have no effect here, but are included for completeness. Since 1981, daylight saving has begun on the last Sunday in March at 01:00 UTC. Until 1995 it ended the last Sunday in September at 01:00 UTC, but this changed to the last Sunday in October starting in 1996.

For purposes of display, “LMT” and “BMT” were initially used, respectively. Since Swiss rules and later EU rules were applied, the time zone abbreviation has been CET for standard time and CEST for daylight saving time.

FILES

/etc/localtime

Default local timezone file.

/usr/share/zoneinfo

Default timezone information directory.

NOTES

For areas with more than two types of local time, you may need to use local standard time in the AT field of the earliest transition time’s rule to ensure that the earliest transition time recorded in the compiled file is correct.

If, for a particular timezone, a clock advance caused by the start of daylight saving coincides with and is equal to a clock retreat caused by a change in UT offset, zic produces a single transition to daylight saving at the new UT offset (without any change in wall clock time). To get separate transitions use multiple zone continuation lines specifying transition instants using universal time.

SEE ALSO

tzfile(5), zdump(8)