Receive updates via email:

 Updates via RSS

Tag Cloud

Blog Archive

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Outlook 2007 Multiple Time Zones Offset Incorrect with DST

As luck would have it, I would be traveling to the East Coast this past week. And I commonly use the "multiple time zones" feature in Microsoft Outlook 2007 -- to keep track of appointment times in the time zone I generally find myself in, Pacific Time (PST). My second time zone either is commonly India Standard Time (IST) for the teams I am commonly working with.

Sometimes, however -- I do shift the timing to the East Coast for the Eastern Time (EST) zone. Especially when I was preparing to head on the above mention trip, that way I can plan my meetings on both the West Coast and East Coast at the right times and easily see everything together on the same Weekly Calendar view inside Microsoft Outlook. (regardless if it is Outlook 2000, Outlook XP, Outlook 2003, or Outlook 2007)

However, after booking a bunch of meetings, I started noticing a problem. The people that I was planning meeting with on the East Coast were mentioning to me that my meetings were for an hour later than I thought they were. I quickly looked at the calendar and it appeared to be at the right time, at least according the what the multiple time zone view told me.

But, when I looked closer...and interesting problem was revealed.

Timezone offset for multiple time zone view in Microsoft Outlook 2000, XP, 2003, 2007 off for DST

For some reason, the time offset in the Weekly View in the Outlook calendar was showing only a two hour difference between Pacific Time and Eastern Time. Which we all know should be three hours total. Oddly enough the problem didn't appear for either Central Time (CST) or Mountain Standard Time (MST).

Knowing the recent time change happened to Daylight Savings Time (DST), I assumed it was just Daylight Savings Time bug that I could use a tool (like this one). However, the problem I experienced did not directly apply.

What it appears I have discovered is nn existing, unfixed bug in the way Microsoft handles daylight savings with the multiple calendars specifically for the Eastern Time Zone (EST) when used as the secondary time zone. And it only occurs for one week (November 1st-7th in 2009) in with daylight savings and then return to standard time. Oddly, for the week of March 14th-20th in 2010 when we go to Daylight Savings time there is actually a four hour gap. This seems to to occur every year for the same week, with the November 7th-13th, 2010 experiencing the same problem.

While it is unknown whether Microsoft plans to fix the issue in Outlook 2007, we do know that it will occur, rather predictably moving forward. So, if you use multiple calendars and the Eastern Time Zone is your secondary one -- you can consistently expect the behavior the week after Daylight Savings occurs. If we cannot prevent it, at least we can manage it knowing what to expect.

Let's just hope I don't travel to the East Coast in March, 2010...since I'll likely forget about the problem until I start booking meetings at the wrong time.


Alex said...

Today I was in net and saw there one tool-fix outlook.I was glad,because program solved my issues very easy and absolutely free.Moreover utility showed me how it recover data from Microsoft Exchange .ost files and convert them into Microsoft Outlook .pst files.