Both Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 attempt to keep their system clocks current by periodically synchronizing with a remote Internet time server—either time.windows.com or time.nist.gov. They usually perform this task once a week at a randomly selected time (to prevent congestion of the time servers).
However, if your system hasn't been able to synchronize its time information for more than a week, you'll be alerted. If that happens, the problem is usually due to the remote time server being overloaded, and corrects itself in short order.
You can remove the TZ variable manually. If you're not sure if it has been set, the NSTIME application will warn you if it has and can provide you with other information about your system's local time-zone settings.
About the author: Serdar Yegulalp is editor of the Windows Power Users Newsletter, which is devoted to hints, tips, tricks, news and goodies for Windows NT, Windows 2000 and Windows XP users and administrators. He has more than 10 years of Windows experience under his belt, and contributes regularly to SearchWinComputing.com and SearchSQLServer.com.
More information on this topic:
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users log on to a domain when a system clock is desynnchronized?
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This was first published in September 2006