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The Upcoming 2038 Date Bug


An old, well-known and well-understood bug will cause calculation of time to fail

25 years from today, January 19, 2038, at 03:14:08 UTC, an odd thing will happen to some of the no doubt very large number of computing devices in our world: An old, well-known and well-understood bug will cause their calculation of time to fail.

The problem springs from the use of a 32-bit signed integer to store a time value, as a number of seconds since 00:00:00 UTC on Thursday, 1 January 1970, a practice begun in early UNIX systems with the standard C library data structure time_t. On January 19, 2038, at 03:14:08 UTC that integer will overflow, as demonstrated in this animated GIF:

For more detail on the problem:... Read full story on BYTE


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