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The date bug which is interfering with Aussie point of sale transactions has spread to some Windows mobile phones. The glitch means that text messages received since New Year's Eve will appear with a 2016 date. Card scanners in thousands of Australian shops have also been hit, as we reported yesterday. Bank of Queensland systems …

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Very Troll ish but

Ha ha ha ha ha

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Paris Hilton

Windows Mobile is past its use-by date

Seems they used a 16-bit integer for the date on Windows Mobile. That would allow a device to have a 16 year life span.

Windows Mobile developed in 1992 as Windows CE (it was released 2 years later). Now its 2010. Exactly 16 years. Bam! It's lights out for Windows Mobile.

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WTF?

4 bits

Hi,

0-15 value is for 4-bit integer, not 16-bit, 16-bit =2^16=65536, which with your theory would be valid until year 67523... I'm sure we all be using God phone or Android by then!

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Silver badge
Flame

"Past its use-by date"

applies to your arithmetic skills as well.

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Boffin

Ahem

Assuming the same system as Windows (i.e. 24 hours = 1) a 16-bit integer yields just over 179 years and 5 months.

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@blackworx

I was under the impression that the Windows time/date system was measured in units of 100ns since the start of the Gregorian calendar, at or around 1600 or so.

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Coat

@Fraser

I stand corrected.

If Windows Mobile *did* use a 16-bit integer for dates, I'd have been right.

Just as well I changed the title of my original reply from "Ahem You're All Wrong" to just "Ahem".

Ahem.

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WTF?

My Xperia X1 is not affected..

My Xperia X1 is a windows mobile 6.1 phone and it is not suffering from any such affliction.

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R 4
Dead Vulture

So, bugs are spreading now?

What is the method of replication it is using to spread from some random Australian POS software to Windows phones?

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Anonymous Coward

Simple

From what I have read both run Windows Mobile, or WinCE.

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Gates Halo

not on my phone

I haven't noticed it on my phone, checked it and the date seems fine on mine.

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Dead Vulture

Bollocks!

WinMo 6.1 vanilla here and every one I've received so far this year quite correctly says 2010.

If you actually *read* the linked article, it says specifically that it's not confined to WinMo devices and seems to affect all US carriers.

I wonder what's really at fault here?

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HEX

I suspect that someone "fixed" the y2k problem and used a HEX (base 16) number to store the date. This has worked fine for 00 through 09, but once 10 comes along that is 16 in base 10. Could be something as simple as that.

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Thumb Up

Very plausible

This sounds like the most likely explanation to me.

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Thumb Down

Any ideas how?

Obviously there's some common dodgy code lurking about creating this problem, but I can't for the life of me figure out how you'd go about coding something that copes with dates up to 2010, but gives 2016 for 2010.

I imagine finding this in the code:

if (year > 2009) {

year = 2016; // Lolz!!!11 Jokezorz

}

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Joke

A HEX on all your houses!

This is the work of witches I tells you!

The year of twenty 0x10 is upon ye!!!

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FAIL

Nope

HTC Topaz running 6.5 Build 21896.5.0.82

Last message read 01/04/2010 (Must remember to change date settings to UK at some point...)

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Anonymous Coward

2010 bug

My N97 has failed to display any photo taken since New Year in the photo album app. They're on the device as I can pull them off by browsing the file system.

As always, Nokia, great hardware but you really should find someone else to do your software for you.

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no problem here

No such problem on my N97.

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Reg Affected Too?

I clicked on "Be the first to post a comment!" but low, there are already six replies.

SEVENTH!

My WinMo is unfortunately not affected :(

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FAIL

Hex/Dec

Sounds to me like someone see 0d10 as 0x10 and convert it to 0d16.... then put a 0d20 front...

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Gates Halo

Not me either

Unfortunately it means I've just admitted to owning a WinMo phone.

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This post has been deleted by its author

Pint

Re: Not me either

Yes but remember that admitting you have a problem is the first step to recovery!

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WTF?

hmm

Was the software for the banks also written by Microsoft by any chance? Could they have reused code from WM?

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why?

Why would a wired EFTPOS terminal have mobile phone code in it?

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HTC Touch Pro

with WinMo 6.1 and no problems. So, exactly which WinMo phones are having this bug again?

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I would just like to say

HAPPY 2016 EVERYONE!!

Can I really retire next year?

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Gates Halo

All fine here

All fine on my phone as well.

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No issues on my HTC Touch Pro 2 run WM 6.5

All my SMS' show the correct 2010 date.

But then the HTC uses HTC's own Manilla front-end, and therefore perhaps doesn't use the Windows Mobile code for this.

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Dead Vulture

Manila front-end

I'm using a HD2 but all the standard HTC texting implementations use Windows mobile's Date and Outlook APIs, I'm pretty sure. Still grand for me, though. As mentioned earlier this isn't winmo specific and it doesn't seem to be happening in the UK. Nice fact-checking before the headline was written I see.

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Paris Hilton

Oddness

Went round to a mate's house last night to look at a Windows XP box that was having trouble.

Date on that was 2016 as well.

Mind you, it was virus-laden.

Paris, because she hasn't got a clue either.

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Happy

nope..

my xperia is working fine

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Thumb Up

Mine works fine

Got an Omnia 2 running WM 6.5 and all the dates are fine

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Samsung Omnia and HTC Touch Dual all okay

I've got a Samsung Omnia running a version of 6.5 and my gf has a HTC Touch Dual (my old phone) also running 6.5 and no such problems.

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Boffin

Its the real time clock chip

This problem has hit some RISC OS computers which have a Dallas real time clock chip rather than a Philips one. It's down to the clock chip returning the date in binary coded decimal rather than plain binary. it worked up to now as the values 0-9 are the same in both schemes, but 10 is 0x10 in BCD rather than 0x0A, which the clock code has incorrectly read as 16, hence thinking it's 2016.

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The Y2K Bug strikes at last

... just ten years late!

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Anonymous Coward

I thought it was widely accepted

...that the bug is inherently part of the SMS standard, not device-specific?

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Moh

Judging by the reports I've seen, it looks like the problem is actually with specific mobile carriers rather than devices.

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touch pro2 6.5

not affected :/

and i was kinda thinking cool :( bummed out now .....

Wait ill try holding my phone upside down and see if it works !!!!

*thumbs up :P

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No funny dates here

We have loads of different windows mobiles at work running 6.1, palm, htc, asus. I've not heard any complaints about this.

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WTF?

Which phones have this problem?

My HTC Touch is unaffected.

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Megaphone

Nope!

No such problem on my HTC HD2 running Winmo 6.5. Has ANYONE had this problem on a Winmo phone?

Who on Earth came to this conclusion?

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WTF?

Evil Bunnies

Its the bunnies .. they've gotten in an nibbled at the carroty goodness in the airwaves and corrupted the data !!! its TRUE!

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Linux

Oh well....

Just another nail in the coffin for Windows Mobile

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WTF?

Mogul (HTC Titan)

Yup... The phone says 2010, the SMSes say 2016. Since my phone has been flashed to a 3rd party carrier (MetroPCS), and I have a different SMS/MMS client installed, I don't think it's WinMO. I wonder if it's a time hack from the wireless network.

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German ATMs

Related?

http://www.thelocal.de/sci-tech/20100104-24353.html

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HTC Touch Diamond

No problems on my Touch Diamond running Windows Mobile 6.1. I suggest the original report of a blanket problem with WinMo is incorrect.

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Alien

Phew

Thank goodness that it's just a Windows bug on some phones. I started to get really worried for a moment when I received a message from 2016 saying, "Please help - Shut down the Large Hadron Collider - The Portal has opened - agggghh"

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Happy

Smirk Smirk

As one who bears the indelible scars from a Y2K project, I wait with deep interest to find out what caused this one

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