Error: The System Clock has been set back to the past. This is not allowed!
Starting an Esri software product may return the following error:
Error: "The System Clock has been set back to the past. This is not allowed!"
Any action that puts future-dated files on the license manager server results in the error message shown above. Setting the system clock to the past, setting the clock ahead and then back to the present, or getting future-dated files from another source are all examples of such an action.
Note: Setting the clock back does not cause this error if the user has a permanent license. The software can still be launched.
Solution or Workaround
- Verify that the date and time on the system are correct. Also verify that AM or PM is set properly.
Figure 1: The Date and Time Properties dialog box
- Verify that the time zone is correct; open the Date and Time Properties dialog:
Windows NT and 2000:
- Click Start > Settings > Control Panel > Date and Time.
- Select the Time Zone tab.
- Select Start > Control Panel > Date and Time.
- Select the Time Zone tab.
- Click Start > Control Panel > Date and Time.
- Under Time zone, click Change time zone.
- Reboot the computer and start ArcMap. If problem persists, move to Step 4.
- Verify that there are no hidden files and folders.
Note: Please see the Microsoft help documentation for the appropriate operating system to show hidden files, folders, and drives.
Note: The following step is not necessary in Version 10 and later versions. Setting the clock back to the current date and time should resolve the error.
- Search the computer's hard drive for files with future file dates.
Note: Please see the appropriate Microsoft help documentation for help on how to search for files by date.
Note: This step is not necessary in Version 10 and later versions. Setting the clock back to the current date and time should resolve the error.
Warning: The instructions below include making changes to essential parts of your operating system. It is recommended that you backup your operating system and files, including the registry, before proceeding. Consult with a qualified computer systems professional, if necessary. Esri cannot guarantee results from incorrect modifications while following these instructions; therefore, use caution and proceed at your own risk.
- Remove all files and folders whose time/date stamp is greater than 4 hours ahead of the current system time and date. This may require moving them onto another workstation, reloading applications, or in the case of system files, it may be necessary to reinstall the operating system.
Note: Though other alternatives may be available, Esri Technical Support cannot provide or support the use of them. If there are further questions regarding the information in this article, contact Esri Technical Support, otherwise direct all other inquiries to an Esri regional representative.