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Clock setting in Debian


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#1 Chris4835

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 03:12 PM

I Installed LINUX Debian in October 2011 on an Apple powerBook. It works just fine. But I just can not set the time and date. Each time I get the following error: Clock and time setting, /sbin/hwclock returned 18944 failed to set system time. I usually enter my password, that I use when I start the computer. But each time I get the same error and the date goes back to Wed. Dec. 31,1969. I also tried entering the root password, that I used when I first installed the operating system. Does not help either. Can somebody help me please?

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#2 Zen Seeker

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 11:46 AM

Hello,

If you open a command shell and type; date mmddhhmm
You should set the proper date and time.
Example: date 01081144 should set the date and time for January 8th at 11:44AM

You can also do a search on google for "Linux set time" and find sites like this.
http://linux.about.com/od/lsa_guide/a/gdelsa87.htm

Start with what I noted and see how that goes.


Regards,
Zen

#3 Chris4835

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 01:16 PM

Thanks for the answer Zen Seeker. But how do I open a command shell? Forgive me but I'm still brand new to Linux.
Actually it's not so much about setting the time and date. I can do that alright by clicking on the tome aplet. But the problem is wit the AUTHENTICATION, after I set the date and time. It just will not accept either one of my two passwords. And I get the following message: Failed to set system time /isbin/hwclock returned 18944. So what does that mean? And where do I go from here?

Edited by Chris4835, 10 January 2013 - 10:21 AM.


#4 Zen Seeker

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Posted 10 January 2013 - 01:06 PM

From your menu look for a terminal window icon, which is another name for the shell, or do a ctrl+F2 to switch to a non-gui login screen. (ctrl+F7 should switch you back to the gui at any time as it's a separate session.)

Once you login use the sudo command to run the next command as the super user. You would be prompted for your password again and then the rest should work fine.

example: sudo date mmddhhmm

The gui will take a few minutes to refresh and show the same new date and time but that should be it.

Most things that require a password in the gui are looking for your user password but a few look for the root/admin password. If your account is not setup to let you use "sudo" then you will need to do this as root buy typing "su" and then enter the root password when prompted. (If acting as root no no longer need to use "sudo" to run commands.)

See if you can do any of the above so we know what your issue is and at least resolve the time issue.

#5 Chris4835

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Posted 10 January 2013 - 03:20 PM

I'm almost there Zen Seeker. I set the time, date and year. I set it this afternoon but it shows up as AM. I waned to use the 12 hour format. now all I have to figure out how to change the AM to PM. And figure out to save the changes, because all I did was press the enter button. But upon restarting the computer emediately the time went right back to december 31, as before. I hope you'll be so kind and let me know how to do that too.

#6 DarkSnake-Kobra

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Posted 10 January 2013 - 07:01 PM

When installing Debian did you say yes to set the time to UTC? Most of the time Unix/Linux unlike Windows expect the hardware clock to be set to UTC otherwise they may not interpret it correctly.

#7 Zen Seeker

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 11:19 AM

I'm almost there Zen Seeker. I set the time, date and year. I set it this afternoon but it shows up as AM. I waned to use the 12 hour format. now all I have to figure out how to change the AM to PM. And figure out to save the changes, because all I did was press the enter button. But upon restarting the computer emediately the time went right back to december 31, as before. I hope you'll be so kind and let me know how to do that too.



If you enter the time in 24 hour format it will still come up AM/PM when you see it in the GUI.

To make it follow UTC just do "date -u mmddhhmm" (use 24hr format.)

Use "date --help" for more options if you need them.

The only time I've ever seen a clock reset after rebooting is when the onboard battery is dead. (The time and date you note is the default date of Linux...when it was first created I believe...you can look that up easy enough if you care.)

Have you checked your BIOS date and time and set it? Then rebooted and checked it again?

I've had issues when trying to sync my dual boot time between windows and linux, if they don't sync you can gain or lose hours, but never with just one OS.

Let me know if the above fixes your AM/PM, UTC if you want it, and what the BIOS shows.


Regards,
Zen

#8 Chris4835

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 01:03 PM

Before I can go any further I have 2 questions
1. Does the Apple laptop have a seperate battery? (aside from the battery that runs it). If it does, this could very well be my problem.

2. How do I get into the BIOS in the Apple computer? As for the UTC time, I don't remember if I had a choice.

#9 Zen Seeker

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 05:36 PM

Before I can go any further I have 2 questions
1. Does the Apple laptop have a seperate battery? (aside from the battery that runs it). If it does, this could very well be my problem.

2. How do I get into the BIOS in the Apple computer? As for the UTC time, I don't remember if I had a choice.


I haven't touched an apple pc in about 20 years. But...they are pretty much the same just running a different OS. (You can still boot a linux live DVD from a Mac so I've been told.)

No idea how to get into the BIOS. Never had it come up and no access to an apple now.

It would be a small flat watch type battery most likely. I've seen them hidden under laptop keyboards, under the laptop battery, and even behind the vent fan. On a desktop it's usually easy to spot on the main motherboard.

Google the BIOS info for your system first...from there check and recheck that date and time are correct. Then look for the battery if things are off and keep resetting.

Good luck.

Zen

#10 Chris4835

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Posted 12 January 2013 - 04:18 PM

Thanks Zen I'll keep trying...

#11 Chris4835

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 02:34 PM

You were right Zen. The internal battery is under the keyboard. Had to remove 22 screws to get to it. it's a special battery approx 7/8 in. in dia and is soldered to a smal plug in board. But it ckecks out ok. Unfortunately I haven't figured out yet, how to get in the BIOS. But I'll work on that too.

#12 Zen Seeker

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 04:08 PM

Thought for sure the battery would be low. How old is the hardware/system?

Not sure if an Apple does a POST like a PC does but do you ever see a flashing courser or message to hit an "F" key?

Glad your able to move forward on this.

Zen

#13 myrti

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 07:12 PM

Hi,

do you also have a windows install on that machine or just Debian and OSX?

regards myrti

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#14 Chris4835

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 08:51 PM

Myrti I only have Debian on the computer. When I looked inside for the battery I saw a date of 2004 on a sticker. So I assume the computer might be 8 years old.

#15 Zen Seeker

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 02:48 PM

Myrti I only have Debian on the computer. When I looked inside for the battery I saw a date of 2004 on a sticker. So I assume the computer might be 8 years old.


Hmm, that's still a 9 year old battery. For the buck or two it would cost I'd look at replacing it now rather than later.

Any luck on the BIOS settings? From what I've read it looks like a lot of them use EFI without a user interface, so no BIOS.


I did find this which might help you out if you can follow the steps at the attached link;

Resetting PowerBook and iBook Power Management Unit (PMU)

"After the reset, on some iBooks and PowerBooks, the system clock is set to 00:00 (GMT), 01 Jan 1970 for computers with Mac OS X or 00:00, 01 Jan 1904 for computers with Mac OS 9."

https://support.apple.com/kb/ht1431




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