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Our experts answer your technical questions.
Setting Time

Although my DEC Alpha NFS server and the Linux machines all have the same local time, every file written to the NFS partition in the Linux machines is one hour (exactly one hour) ahead in time. For example, if both the server and a Linux client have 20:30, and the client writes a file to the NFS partition, the time of creation of the file is 21:30. How can I correct this problem? —Jose Luis Richardo ChavezRed Hat Linux 4.2 and 4.1

Linux adjusts the time displayed by the date command for your local time zone. It's possible to see the “correct” time from date, if your system's internal notion of the correct time and the time zone setting are both wrong. For example, if your internal clock is an hour fast, but your time zone is an hour behind, you'll see the behavior you described. Check the time zone output in the date command. For example:

Mon Aug 4 12:12:53 PDT 1997

indicates we are currently running Pacific Daylight Time. On Red Hat systems you want /etc/localtime to be a link to a file in /usr/lib/zoneinfo.

Also, you generally want your system to store time in your local time. Edit the /etc/sysconfig/clock file, so that you have:


Then go into your system's BIOS setup to check that the local time is set correctly. —Larry M. Augustin, VA Research

Running XDM

How do I properly run XDM at system bootup? —Aris Seisums Slackware 1.3.20

I'll assume you've got X and XDM set up properly; if not, read the man page. Most distributions provide an XDM setup that works, so you may be able to just use it. Also, make sure you can use startx to get into X after logging on in the normal way.

Next, look for a line like:


in your /etc/inittab file. This will tell you what run level init starts at. The run level is the number in the middle. Add a line like this:

x:5:respawn:/usr/bin/X11/xdm -nodaemon
to the /etc/inittab file. For the 5 shown above, substitute the run level you're running at—then reboot.

If you want to test this first (good idea), pick a different run level (one below) to run XDM at. Don't pick 0, 1 or 6 as these have special meanings. Then, as root, run telinit<\!s>runlevel to switch to that run level. If it doesn't work, telinit<\!s>regular<\!s>runlevel will switch you back. —Jeff Licquia