We are suffering from some date/time conversion issues so I am looking into any possible reasons.

During this I have stumbled on this strange issue when issueing the date command in Ubuntu 14.04.

date gives Thu Nov 26 11:05:50 GMT+1 2015

but date -u gives Thu Nov 26 12:05:53 UTC 2015

The commands are typed about 3 seconds apart, but the GMT+1 time is wrong, it should have been 13:05.

/etc/timezone is set to "Etc/UTC".

Output from timedatectl

Local time: Thu 2015-11-26 13:09:49 GMT+1 Universal time: Thu 2015-11-26 14:09:49 UTC Timezone: Etc/UTC (GMT+1, -0100) NTP enabled: yes NTP synchronized: yes RTC in local TZ: no DST active: n/a

Apparently that is the reason, but how can GMT+1 be -0100. (As dadexix86 answer explains that is correct behavior when using Etc/UTC.)

It may have been a messed up /etc/localtime file. After doing

sudo timedatectl set-timezone Europe/Copenhagen

date and date -u are now in synch.

(The problem was "Etc/UTC" turning around +/-. Not only did setting the timezone solve the date problem. Our conversion issues disappeared as well.)


The problem is Etc/UTC, that defines GMT-1 as one hour ahead of Greenwich (so in the east) and GMT+1 as one hour behind (so in the west), doing it in the opposite way as UTC does.

I refer you to this discussion on Stack Overflow for more detailed explanations.

So, I suggest that you change your timezone to UTC+1 or, better, to something like CET, so that you will not have problems with daylight saving time.

This is my timedatectl

      Local time: gio 2015-11-26 15:14:20 CET
  Universal time: gio 2015-11-26 14:14:20 UTC
        RTC time: gio 2015-11-26 15:14:37
       Time zone: Europe/Berlin (CET, +0100)
 Network time on: yes
NTP synchronized: no
 RTC in local TZ: yes

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