Klaus Zimmermann's Corner

Setting timezones in Linux the raw way

Another sort of note-to-self thing: this is how you can change timezones in Linux easily, and without the need to delve into GUI settings applications or the lore - the /etc/localtime file.

Whereas Debian-based distros take the package tz-data as the source of their timezone config, and a quick reinstall through dpkg-reconfigure tz-data would guide you step-by-step in selecting a new one, Arch is spartan: just point the /etc/localtime file to the desired timezone file under /usr/share/zoneinfo. Afterwards, it's only a matter of re-syncing your hardware clock (rtclock).

In terms of commands:

ln -s /usr/share/zoneinfo/Your/Timezone /etc/localtime
hwclock --systohc

And that's it! No need to keep clicking and looking for settings, and can be done even from the console. Definitely a great one to keep in the belt. And of course, source for the whole thing.