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All day events that span two days across time zones in Outlook

Posted by Milind Naphade on 23/01/2009

This is just a small follow up note to the Microsoft KB 262451. Sometimes, even if you choose the time of the meeting manually you still see the calendar entry spanned across two days. Why would that happen if Microsoft has already addressed the issue. Is this a bug? No it is not. It is a simple logic of time zones and the way outlook handles the time zone information in your calendar. The following should explain you why does it happen?


There are two users in my exchange organization Kate and Robb. Kate resides in Central Time Zone (US) and Robb resides in Pacific Time Zone (US). Rob sends a meeting request to Kate and marks this meeting as an All Day Event. Rob can see it correctly framed within a single day not spanning across the days.


However, when Kate receives this meeting she sees it spanning across two days and it appears the same even after she accepts it.


Basically, this behavior occurs because of the way outlook handles the meeting requests. If you observe correctly Outlook provides you a time frame of 24 hours to book someone’s or your own calendar. From 12:00 AM to 11:30 PM. When a appointment or a meeting request is marked as an “All day Event” outlook automatically adds the start time of the meeting request as 12:00 AM depending upon the local or mailbox time zone configured for a particular mailbox. This is one of the reasons why Kate’s calendar shows this entry spanned across two days. As written earlier if Rob’s outlook marked the start time as 12:00 AM 28th Wed according to Pacific Time it turns into 2:00AM 28th Wed in Central Time where Kate resides. Yet, the meeting is to complete after 24 hours and hence it spans across two days till 2:00 AM next day.

In an another scenario if this would have been a half day event which would have started somewhat around 7:00 AM and ended near about 7:00 PM in Rob’s calendar it would have reflected the correct booking in Kate’s calendar because according to her client time zone settings the meeting would have started around 9:00 AM and would have ended by 9:00 PM.

Another case where a meeting starts 7:00 AM PST and ends at 11:59 PM which is again more than a half day event will reflect spanned across two days to any users having its outlook client configured in CST.


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