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Broken Time-zone handling in Netscape V2 and V3 (but not V1)

From: Damian Reeves <damian@zeus.co.uk>
Date: Mon, 1 Apr 1996 02:34:35 +0100
Message-Id: <199604010134.CAA11309@jobbie.chu.cam.ac.uk>
To: www-talk@w3.org

Has anyone else noticed that Netscape's browsers have broken time zone
handling?  This has come to ahead today since us Brits put our clocks
forward an hour from GMT to BST.  Here's a trace of some sample
dialogues between Netscape V{2,3} and a web-server:

Load new page:
Netscape: GET / HTTP/1.0
          [other fields (no If-Modified-Since)]

Server:   [ HTTP response fields]
          Last-Modified: Monday, 01-Apr-96 00:04:03 GMT

Reload page again:
Netscape: GET / HTTP/1.0
          [other fields]
          If-Modified-Since: Monday, 01-Apr-96 01:04:03 GMT


Now the local time on the machine at the time was about 1.05 BST so
the browser is running an hour in front of GMT (so to speak).  But for
Netscape to query the server to ask whether a page has altered in the
next hour is a rather optimistic cache replacement strategy I feel.
Version 1 correctly sends an If-Modified of 00:04:03 GMT.

Specifically this occurs with Netscape versions 2.0, 2.01 and 3.0b2 on
Solaris, BSD and Linux, all V1 browsers performed correctly on those
platforms.  I have neither the time nor inclination to test any others
but I guess the result will be the same.

The upshot of this is that Netscape 2/3 is now unusable for
development work in this country, and presumably all other time-zones
when they switch to daylight saving time!  Either you turn off caching
completely, or wait an hour to view your creation before you decide to
edit it again (or permanently hold down the shift-key).  Back to
Netscape 1 for a bit I feel...


Damian Reeves, <damian@zeus.co.uk>                 Zeus Technology Ltd.
Download the world's fastest webserver today!      http://www.zeus.co.uk
Received on Sunday, 31 March 1996 20:27:46 UTC

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