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How to Change/Set Date, Time, & Timezone on a Linux Server

Are you a Linux user trying set or change the date, time, or timezone on your Linux Server? Read on to learn how to display the current date, manually change the system date and time, and set timezones in Linux using the command line and these simple commands.

Display Date in Linux

You can use the date command to display the current date and time:

# date
Tue May 11 22:27:44 CET 2010

Set Date in Linux

To manually set a new date and time in Linux, use the following syntax:
date -set=”STRING”

Refer to the example below:
# date -s “23 June 2013 18:00:00”

Set Time in Linux

To manually set the time in Linux, use the following syntax:
# date +%T -s “05:10:15”

* 05: Hour (hh)
* 10: Minute (mm)
* 15: Second (ss)

Change Timezone in Linux

The file /etc/localtime, is a copy of a file which has details about your time zone. The Zone information file is located at /usr/share/zoneinfo and this depends on your distribution.

cd /etc/

ln -sf /usr/share/zoneinfo/EST localtime

If you wish to set it to IST (Asia/Calcutta):

ln -sf /usr/share/zoneinfo/Asia/Calcutta localtime


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