Windows 7: My time is always two hours behind the actual time.

I've changed the time, but, whenever I restart it, goes back to the incorrect time, 2 hours behind the actual time.

I'm on (UTC+02:00) Harare, Pretoria. Even if I try sync time with an Internet server, it still is incorrect by 2 hours!

How can I fix this?

  • 1
    You changed your timezone right? From what I'm seeing it's set to UTC right now.
    – digitxp
    Dec 11, 2010 at 20:58

5 Answers 5


Click on the clock and choose "Change date and time settings..."

Click the "Internet Time" tab. Is it set up to synchronize the time with time.windows.com? If it is, try unchecking that box, saving the settings, and rebooting to see if that fixes your problem. If it isn't checked already, try checking it and making sure it is set to time.windows.com.

Here is an article that may explain the problem:
Windows/Ubuntu Dual Boot-Setting time in one changes time in the other

The BIOS is the base clock and keeps time when the OS is off.

He boots into Windows, and the time is out. He either fixes it by hand or via time server, and Windows helpfully 'fixes' the time on the hardware clock on the motherboard in BIOS. Then he reboots into Ubuntu, and it picks up the time from the motherboard and sets the OS to that time. It's out by 4 hours because Linux expects the hardware clock to be UTC rather than EDT. In Ubuntu he either fixes the time manually or by ntp time server, then when he shuts down Linux helpfully 'fixes' the hardware clock. And around we go...

Note you don't get this when you run one or the other virtualized - just when you dual boot.

Does that explain it better?

So it seems that for dual booting Windows and Ubuntu, both need absolutely to use a time server.

See this for Windows : Dealing With Windows Vista Time Sync Problems.

  • 4
    This may also be a result of dual-booting Linux or another operating system that sets the system clock to UTC.
    – oKtosiTe
    Dec 11, 2010 at 21:08
  • I tried synchronizing with internet time but when I reboot same problem. I am dual booting with Linux. The time is correct in Ubuntu and has the correct timezone too.
    – darren
    Dec 14, 2010 at 19:57
  • Dual-boot seems to be the cause of the problem. See my edit above.
    – harrymc
    Dec 14, 2010 at 20:17
  • 1
    I have the same problem with dual boot and in Ubuntu everything works fine but Windows has the issue. I can set time sync but windows won't sync at startup. 1:0 for Ubuntu.
    – thonixx
    May 27, 2012 at 0:07
  • 4
    adding the key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\TimeZoneInformation\RealTimeIsUniversal=1 with datatype DWORD32 fixed the problem for me source: lifehacker.com/5742148/…
    – John Doe
    Oct 3, 2012 at 18:28

A quick and simple answer that worked for me:

Create a file time.bat with the following contents:

%windir%\system32\sc.exe start w32time task_started

Put the bat file in your startup, then reboot. After small delay (from 30 seconds to 1 minute) system time will be corrected.


Also check the Date/Time settings in the BIOS. I've found before that changing the time in Windows didn't change the BIOS clock.

  • 1
    I've never personally seen that issue, but it is possible some buggy BIOS might fail to set the hardware clock from the OS.
    – TuxRug
    Dec 12, 2010 at 8:08
  • My BIOS date settings are all in order. Correct date in BIOS and in Ubuntu.
    – darren
    Dec 14, 2010 at 19:58

Adding the key


with datatype DWORD32 fixed the problem for me too. Problem with dual boot with Ubuntu.


Without knowing which OS you're running, I'll assume it's either XP or W2K. Try re-registering the Time Service by typing the following commands at the command prompt (Start | Run | Type cmd, and click OK), and hitting ENTER after each...

net stop w32time 
w32tm.exe /unregister 
w32tm.exe /register 
net start w32time

Resource -> http://www.overclockers.com/forums/showthread.php/442751-Taskbar-clock-constantly-falling-3-hours-behind

  • The question title includes "Windows 7", so I would assume that the question owner is running Windows 7.
    – Ben N
    May 4, 2016 at 19:28
  • Why would you assume they are running Windows XP or Windows 2000, in 2010, both of those operating systems were over a decade old. I mean you had both Windows Vista and Windows 7 both on the market at that point. Besides which version of Windows the user was running, was both clear, but honestly irrelevant to any proper answer.
    – Ramhound
    May 4, 2016 at 19:59
  • I copied the answer as you can see. It works fir w7, too.
    – resw67
    May 5, 2016 at 8:41

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