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UNIX in a Nutshell: System V Edition

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UNIX Commands
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date



date

 [

option

] [

+



format

]


date

 [

options

] [

string

]

In the first form, print the current date and time, specifying an optional display format . In the second form, a privileged user can set the current date by supplying a numeric string . format can consist of literal text strings (blanks must be quoted) as well as field descriptors, whose values will appear as described below (the listing shows some logical groupings).

Format

%n

Insert a newline.

%t

Insert a tab.

%m

Month of year (01-12).

%d

Day of month (01-31).

%y

Last two digits of year (00-99).

%D

Date in %m/%d/%y format.

%b

Abbreviated month name.

%e

Day of month (1-31); pad single digits with a space.

%Y

Four-digit year (e.g., 1996).

%h

Same as %b .

%B

Full month name.

%H

Hour in 24-hour format (00-23).

%M

Minute (00-59).

%S

Second (00-61); 61 permits leap seconds.

%R

Time in %H:%M format.

%T

Time in %H:%M:%S format.

%I

Hour in 12-hour format (01-12).

%p

String to indicate a.m. or p.m. (default is AM or PM).

%r

Time in %I:%M:%S %p format.

%a

Abbreviated weekday.

%A

Full weekday.

%w

Day of week (Sunday = 0).

%U

Week number in year (00-53); start week on Sunday.

%W

Week number in year (00-53); start week on Monday.

%j

Julian day of year (001-366).

%Z

Time zone name.

%x

Country-specific date format.

%X

Country-specific time format.

%c

Country-specific date and time format (default is %a %b %e %T %Z %Y ; e.g., Mon Feb 1 14:30:59 EST 1993).

The preceding country-specific formats, as well as language names (e.g., for month and weekday) are defined in a file given by strftime (4).

Options

-a s . f

(Privileged user only.) Gradually adjust the system clock until it drifts s seconds away from what it thinks is the "current" time. (This allows continuous micro-adjustment of the clock while the system is running.) f is the fraction of seconds by which time drifts. By default, the clock speeds up; precede s by a - to slow down.

-u

Display or set the time using Greenwich Mean Time.

Strings for setting date

A privileged user can set the date by supplying a numeric string . string consists of time, day, and year concatenated in one of three ways: time or [ day ] time or [ day ] time [ year ]. Note: You don't type the brackets.

time

A two-digit hour and two-digit minute ( HHMM ); HH uses 24-hour format.

day

A two-digit month and two-digit day of month ( mmdd ); default is current day and month.

year

The year specified as either the full four digits or just the last two digits; default is current year.

Examples

Set the date to July 1 ( 0701 ), 4 a.m. ( 0400 ), 1995 ( 95 ):



date 0701040095

The command:



date +"Hello%t Date is %D %n%t Time is %T"

produces a formatted date as follows:

Hello	Date is 05/09/93
	Time is 17:53:39


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