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Mac OS X: The Missing Manual, Panther Edition by David Pogue

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Date & Time

Your Mac’s conception of what time it is can be very important. Every file you create or save is stamped with this time, and every email you send or receive is marked with this time. As you might expect, setting your Mac’s clock is what the Date & Time panel is all about.

Date & Time tab

Click the Date & Time tab. If your Mac is online, turn on “Set Date & Time automatically,” and be done with it. Your Mac sets its own clock by consulting a highly accurate scientific clock on the Internet. (No need to worry about Daylight Savings Time, either, as the time servers take that into account.)

Tip

If you have a full-time Internet connection (cable modem or DSL, for example), you may as well leave this checkbox turned on, so that your Mac’s clock is always correct. If you connect to the Internet by modem, however, turn off the checkbox, so that your Mac won’t keep trying to dial spontaneously at all hours of the night.

If you’re not online and have no prospect of getting there, you can also set the date and time manually. To change the month, day, or year, click the digit that needs changing and then either type a new number or click the little arrow buttons. Press the Tab key to highlight the next number. (You can also specify the day of the month by clicking a date on the mini calendar.)

To set the time of day, use the same technique—or, for more geeky fun, you can set the time by dragging the hour, minute, or second hands on the analog clock. Finally, click Save. (If you get carried ...

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