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I have a virtual machine that is set to PST that a couple of colleagues have in different timezones. If I wanted to change the time-zone to EST and GMT, what do I need to do?

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6 Answers 6

up vote 75 down vote accepted

Execute the following command:

 sudo dpkg-reconfigure tzdata

A menu based tool should be started that allows you to change the timezone.

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2  
It's worth mentioning that not all services will use the updated TZ (ex: cron), if possible restart the machine, or at least manually restart the services you know will need to use the updated TZ. –  Radu Maris Oct 15 '14 at 19:21

Use timedatectl

sudo timedatectl set-timezone <timeszone>

The best part - it's not interactive as dpkg-reconfigure tzdata


set timezone as EST:

sudo timedatectl set-timezone EST

set timezone as UTC:

sudo timedatectl set-timezone UTC

list all timezones:

timedatectl list-timezones
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Not a fan of +1 comments, but am putting one here since this worked for me in the best way. I was wanting a single one-line command line tool to change the timezone, rather than wanting to launch some whole either menu or gui program (I don't know what tzdata does, how it works, but I don't need to with this one line command). Thanks! –  Phil Ryan Jun 1 at 23:21

As root you have to execute:

dpkg-reconfigure tzdata

A menu based tool should be started that allows you to change the timezone.

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The following also work. For GMT:

ln -sf /usr/share/zoneinfo/GMT /etc/localtime

For EST:

ln -sf /usr/share/zoneinfo/EST /etc/localtime
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1  
I think it would be better to link one of the city files rather than GMT or EST, as then they will keep track of daylight savings time, whereas linking (e.g.) GMT will not change the system time to reflect when daylight savings is in effect in your city. e.g.: ln -sf /usr/share/zoneinfo/Europe/London /etc/localtime –  Asfand Yar Qazi Jun 8 at 9:19

Edit the timezone file at the /etc folder as:

Etc/GMT

You can use the next format:

Region "/" City 

Example of /etc/timezone:

Europe/Athens

or

Europe/Paris
Europe/London

You may experiment with the: dpkg-reconfigure tzdata and check cat the timezone file.

You must reboot or start again a service (not the ntp service). I do not know which one. If somebody knows please share with us.

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To run one program with a different time zone setting, set the TZ environment variable, e.g. run TZ=Pacific/Kiritimati date to see what time it is on Christmas Island, or export TZ=Pacific/Kiritimati to have the setting last for a shell session.

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