Well we dodged the bullet on this one, and that was only because of all the work that was put into this issue. Some places did have problems along the ways, but few were show stoppers and we managed to fix them all. This doesn't mean this kind of thing won't happen again in some form (such as Unixes with the old 32bit time in 2035). I am leaving this has a bit of historic snapshot and as a demonstration of link rot with only 4 links left working in late 2010.
A basic check that the internal hardware clock rolls over to the year 2000 correctly, set the clock to 23:59:00 Dec.31,1999 and turn off the system for two minutes then see if the clock is correct after that.
Only in 1996 did we finally start seeing many different PCs that passed this test and that doesn't deal with the system properly rolling over when its on. To check that, use the tool from the National Standards Testing Lab(NSTL).
It seems that many people in the industry think (as recently as 1998) that PCs are crushed less than 5 years after their manufacture not understanding industrial automation and personal computing needs.
In the spring of 1995, Compaq had these large adds showing how their systems we so much cheaper to operate over their life span listing off all kinds useful cost saving things Compaq PC can do. Since there was no mention of the year 2000 and even the new units(with 4 digit year support) we had tried still failed the test, I gave them a call to find out what the scope was. The first three support persons I spoke to went through the same stages of denial, verbally twist their arms to try the test, and then a "Oh my, I'll have to get the next higher level of support involved in this". Finally the systems engineer I got to speak with went through the same process ending in him largely ignoring me while I could hear him talking to the other engineers says "Guy, you've got to see this, we have a PROBLEM!". A year later, new Compaq PCs and servers correctly roll over to the year 2000. If anyone happens to find out the details behind Compaq case number 95050804798 and any effects it may have had, I'd like to hear about them.
This page was last updated on ??10-11-10