The Y2K20 Bug - Classic Mac OS

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lefevere's picture
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The Y2K20 Bug - Classic Mac OS

Date & Time Control Panel in Mac OS 8 (released in 1997) will only let you set a Mac’s date to a range between January 1, 1920 and December 31, 2019

There is a utility that will allow you to set the date and time on your Classic Mac all the way up until the last second: SetDate

 

Simply type in the date and time (in military format)

The Looming Y2K20 Bug

 

Download SetDate (17KB)

Allows setting the date/time through 2042. The stock System 7 Date & Time control panel has problems with current dates. This allows manually setting the date & time through 2042 when deeper problems arise

Classic MacOS Software

 

Military Date Time Group

In US military messages and communications the format is DD HHMMZ MON YY.

Although occasionally seen with spaces, it can also be written as a single string of characters.

Example 1: 091630Z JUL 11 represents (Jul) 09 16:30 Jul 2011 (UTC).

Example 2: 141608Z Dec 19 represents (Dec) 14 16:08, Dec 2019 (UTC)

Military Date Time Group

 

tested on SE/30

mac system 7.0 no problem since only dozens (tens) and units are displayed

 

tested on IIci

mac system 7.1 > patch

 

mac os 8 > patch

Lee Adamson's picture
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Oh nice.  Thanks for posting

Oh nice.  Thanks for posting this.  I was getting pretty discombobulated living in 1920, haha.

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SetDate Issue

Question:  Once I download the SetDate fix, what do I do with it.  Do I place the fix in my Extentions folder, System Folder, Control Panels?  Any suggestions would be welcomed.  Thanks.

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I figured it out.

So, what i figured out on how to use the 2020 fix might seem simple to many on this forum, however, it took me some time to figure out and here is the answer for anyone running into the same issues I did.

 

First, figure out how to download the program from the internet to your older Mac.  I am using a Quadra.  A 3.5 floppy formatted disk from the Quadra was not working, so I formated a 3.5 disk on a PowerPC Mac.  This formatted disk worked.  I paid for a computer person to download the file to the 3.5 disk.  I placed the PowerPC Mac disk into the PowerPC and transfered the download to my server and then to my Quadra.  I do not know if this specific step was necessary.

 

The files are a document file with cpt. and hqx. extentions.  These files will not do anything unless and until you "unpack" them by using a program such as Stuffit.  Once I "expanded" the file, (all you need to do is one of them) then the document becomes a Control Panel icon that can be placed in your Control Panel.

 

Restart your Mac and you should be able to open the SetDate and set the date.

 

Again, this might be very basic for most, but for me it took some time.

 

Good luck.

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Newbie Needs Further Help
Hi,
 
Could someone kindly post the *extracted* files so I can put them on a Mac Formatted 3.5 floppy using MacDrive 10 Standard in a Windows 10 enviorment so I can put them in my Mac II ci Control Panel?  I don't have "Stuffit" on the Mac and it will not extract them *completely* in the Windows 10 enviornment even using the latest or older version 11 Stuffit program for Windows. Thanks!
 
Ymacme wrote:

So, what i figured out on how to use the 2020 fix might seem simple to many on this forum, however, it took me some time to figure out and here is the answer for anyone running into the same issues I did.

 

First, figure out how to download the program from the internet to your older Mac.  I am using a Quadra.  A 3.5 floppy formatted disk from the Quadra was not worki

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Whatsupdoc - which version OS are you using?

Hey Whatsupdoc...I have the Setdate control panel unpacked folder on my older Mac which I used to unpack the file for my really old Mac 128k running OS 7.1.  Works great.  If you do GoogleDrive I could upload it there and share you the link/folder to get it.  But I'd need to know your email address to add you to GoogleDrive.  I'm not sure if you can upload actual files here or not, I've only done pictures.  Hmm  Maybe I should see if that's possible.  Otherwise GoogleDrive works well for that kind of thing.

 

edit:  trying to upload the file here (please remove the .doc from the file after saving - the uploader on this site won't let you upload files unless they have certain extensions)...let's see if this worksMicrosoft Office document iconSetDate.doc

 

 

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SetDate vs. using ResEdit to fix the date in the OS

I posted this information last month, and it may be helpful to you:

Although Rob Braun's handy CDEV "SetDate" worked fine on my Mac SE/30 using System 6 or 7, it froze on my Powerbook 1400c using OS 8.0

This article comes to the rescue on how to use ResEdit to fix the problem on all Macs from the Mac 512 up through those running OS 8.x.

Apple fixed the problem in OS 9:

The Long View (4 digit year codes in legacy Macs)

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cece n'est pas un file

Could someone kindly post the *extracted* files so I can put them on a Mac Formatted 3.5 floppy using MacDrive 10 Standard in a Windows 10 enviorment so I can put them in my Mac II ci Control Panel?

You can't. Un-encoded Mac files can't be sent over the Internet. Each Mac file has two independent parts, or "forks": a data fork and a resource fork, plus metadata specifying its type and the application that created it. In the 68K MacOS, most files have resource forks—all applications and control panels do. But communications protocols are not aware of this concept, so they are only able to see the data fork.

 

I don't have "Stuffit" on the Mac and it will not extract them *completely* in the Windows 10 enviornment even using the latest or older version 11 Stuffit program for Windows.

This isn't possible. Un-encoded Mac files can't be processed (or stored) on other computer systems, like Windows. It doesn't matter that there are HFS utilities for Windows, because Windows applications don't understand resource forks. Those utilities are more useful to transfer files used with OSX, since they rarely have resource forks. It also doesn't matter that compression tools like StuffIt exist for Windows.

 

edit:  trying to upload the file here (please remove the .doc from the file after saving - the uploader on this site won't let you upload files unless they have certain extensions)...let's see if this works

Of course, that will not work.

Transferring Mac files with their metadata and separate forks requires Mac-specific protocols. AppleShare (file sharing) is aware of the forks and can transfer them between Macs, as well as between a Mac and a server running AUFS, Netatalk, etc. A few P2P programs like Hotline are also fork-aware. To transfer Mac files to or from a web server, FTP, or BBS, a method must be used to encode all this information into a single chunk, so that communications protocols can see a simple file as used on other platforms.

MacBinary (.bin) or BinHex (.hqx) were the most popular encoding formats. BinHex is also 7-bit clean, so it was preferred for systems like Usenet that weren't guaranteed to pass all 8 bits of each byte. Both formats encode a single file: each Mac file is encoded separately.

Archiver programs such as StuffIt (on a Mac) can also be used to transfer files, as the archive they create only has a data fork. StuffIt Deluxe (or Lite) also extracts .bin and .hqx files.

MacBinary, BinHex, and StuffIt are all third-party programs—Apple did not include a means to decode files from the Internet with the system. That was no problem, because you couldn't connect to the net anyway without acquiring communication programs such as Netscape, which came bundled with StuffIt Expander. You could get that nearly anywhere; it was on AOL junk mail CDROMs in their billions.

Today those programs shouldn't be used to browse the web, but the bundled decompression tools are still useful.

You can also write a disk image containing StuffIt from a Windows or Unix machine with a floppy disk drive.

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