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Summary and Comments

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1997-10-28 23:05:30


A Catalogue of Horrors Posted by the U.S. Navy



So, you think this problem is easy to solve? Is confined to a handful of ancient legacy mainframes? Is not much of a threat. In short, you're in denial. You're not alone.

Check the y2k Web page of the Department of the Navy, and learn about these horrors and more -- lots more:

* * * * * * * * *

Breadth of Problem:

Affects both programs funded by sponsors and internal programs Affects COTS [commercial off the shelf software] products: Binary Input/Output System (BIOS) chips, Operating Systems, Utilities (sort routines), Tools, Database Management Systems

Affects weapons systems, C2 systems, AIS systems: Embedded chips (firmware), Databases, Applications, Algorithms, Interfaces

Affects caretaker systems which have no owners

Affects Foreign Military Sales

Affects every PC on every desk

Affects users as well as owners

Depth of Problem:

System crashes or won't run

Sorting errors, wrong dates

Subtle miscalculations or inactivity. . . .


"Magic Numbers" of 98, 99, 00 frequently stored in Year fields as end-of-file, no data, or other special flags unrelated to the system's mission

Messages dated beyond 2000 are sorted chronologically before 1999 Clearances/visit requests/drivers licenses valid beyond 2000 are rejected as "expired"

In 2000, inventories received in 1999 are purged as "too old"

In 1999, Operation Orders dated beyond 2000 are purged

Budgets, schedules, projections beyond 2000 are sorted incorrectly NUWC judged Combat Support Systems (e.g., NTCS-A, JMCIS, GPS) at risk as dates are used in their databases

Problems already encountered in NUWC information Technology and Administrative systems

Air Force found Space Warning Systems reject 00 as the year, could not retrieve or delete old messages

DLA nearly purged 80,000 inventory records because system logic considered them "expired"

Older versions of ORACLE and ORACLE-DBMS do not have newer roll-over "rr-data" type

JTIDS and USAF Airborne C&C systems had incorrect leap year calculations

Logistics Information Systems using 2-digit dates have already failed Meteorological Systems will not accept star data for 2000 and beyond Multi-year software licenses may "expire" prematurely in 2000, freezing COTS programs

Disk storage systems use 12/31/99 expiration date as "save to infinity" - may be erased in 2000

PC Real Time Clocks use 2-digit dates, patch to BIOS needed


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