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GMT (UTC) time on hosting servers.

I wonder what other's expeience and how you guys handling these situations.  We have hosted servers here in US that being access around the world.  Data is being loded and edited by the app on these servers as the server time.  So we chose to be agnostic by using GMT (UTC) for all.
We also have people around the world on these servers, so no matter what time we chose it would be hard for someone.

I wonder what other people do in these situations.  Please share.
Thanks.
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That is exactly what we do too.  Using UTC makes it simpler for us because we have the advantage of knowing where everyone's is coming from geographically and we can easily calculate the offset whenever we need that kind of detail.

One thing we do - since we have the luxury of always knowing the location of the data being loaded - is to do the offset calculations ourselves rather than making the user do the calculation.  E.g., if someone is loading data from California, we know the offset from UTC and do the conversion for them rather than force them to do some calculation by hand themselves, which, since being done by a human, would be error prone.

Another way we have handled it at another place I worked is to store the timezone offset with the data, then we just did the calculations at reporitng time.

Either way works, depending on what kind of data and who is doing the uploading.  E.g., if there is a human factor involved in timezone calculation, try to do it for them rather than having them input the timezone or offset.

The important thing is to pick one way and do it consistently.  The reason being you will otherwise have some database content where the offset is pre-calculated, and in other cases where it is not, and it will be endlessly confusing.

Hope this helps!


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