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Energy Policy Act of 2005 Implications on SQL Server

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In the United States, the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (http://webexhibits.org/daylightsaving/b.html) was approved by President Bush on August 8, 2005. Due to this legislation, the day light savings start and end times in the United States will change in the spring of 2007? As such, what patches will I need to apply to my SQL Servers? Do I need to apply different patches for SQL Server 2000 versus 2005?

According to Microsoft, Windows will need to be patched in order to support the upcoming day light savings change. SQL Server will not need to be updated directly, because SQL Server receives its date\time information directly from Windows. Nevertheless, time is of the essence because this patch will impact SQL Server and your application, so be sure to work with your team to push out this change before the pending March 2007 date. For more information on the patch, reference http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=928388.

With some applications, the date\time stamp for the application is very critical. So thorough testing is needed to ensure the application will properly support the time change. From a testing perspective, consider the following testing practices:

  • Validate that all of your date related code is originating from SQL Server functions such as GETDATE() or GETUTCDATE() as opposed to multiple sources in your application such as from a client machine or other servers
  • Build a control test for the application before the patch is applied to validate the critical date\time usage
  • Apply the patch to begin the post patch validation
  • Test your application before, during and after the day light savings change
  • Validate that the date related data is correct after the patch is applied in your development and test environments prior to pushing out the patch to the production environment

Next Steps

  • Since the day light savings time change is inevitable, research this patch and incorporate it into your current patch management process prior to March 2007
  • Be sure to test this change as you would with any other Windows or application change
  • Be sure to start with development environment and then promote the code to the test environment and then promote to the production environment once the testing is accurately completed
  • Here is the link the patch information: http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=928388
  • Special thanks to Chad Boyd from the MSSQLTips community for this tip

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About the author
MSSQLTips author Chad Boyd Chad Boyd is an Architect, Administrator and Developer with technologies such as SQL Server, .NET, and Windows Server.

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