Staring at my Raspberry PI, I can see that the devices clock is going wrong - an error that you can find on many computers. However, even though the month and hour is wrong; the minutes are still correct.

Device time

1:36 PM

Actual time

3:36 PM

(notice the minutes)

How can this be? How come it can only find out the correct minute instead of an accurate dare?

3 Answers 3


"Knowing the current minute" requires having an accurate clock.

"Knowing the current hour" requires having an accurate clock and knowledge of which time zone currently contains the device.

So, getting the minute right is easier than getting the minute and the hour.

Set the time zone to where you're currently located. The device doesn't contain a GPS, so it doesn't know your local conventions.

  • 8
    Strictly speaking, you need knowledge of your current time zone to get the minute right as well. Not all time zones are offset by a whole number of hours to UTC/GMT - some like India are at xx:30; a few at xx:45.
    – e100
    Jul 30, 2012 at 15:34
  • @e100 didn't Venezuela do this? I think the time zone is technically known as "not matching anything in the US" Jul 30, 2012 at 16:40
  • So what you're saying is that the hour is correct, it's just being displayed wrong.
    – kojiro
    Jul 30, 2012 at 16:45
  • @kojiro: It's probably showing correct UTC, as per MSalters's answer.
    – e100
    Jul 30, 2012 at 17:37

You're probably somewhere in mainland Europe, or Africa? Because the device probably has the correct time. Correct UTC time, that is. Your local wallclock will be showing UTC+2, because that's what humans prefer.


Like the previous two answers said, you're running in to time zone issues. On top of that however, your Raspberry Pi doesn't keep track of time when it's powered off like your desktop does, the battery was left out as it would have raised the price of the unit significantly. You'll want to configure your Raspberry Pi to check in with an NTP server upon boot if you want accurate time. You'll also have to make sure the time zone is correct.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .