Minneapolis, October 30, 1999--

Keeping time has never been as simple as it sounds. On Sunday, October 31, most Americans will move their clocks back one hour  -- a task that befuddles many of us. Many computer users will see just how difficult the task is for their computer, despite the fact that technology today allows for even greater precision than ever before. While today’s modern operating systems installed in most PCs make the change automatically, the hardware they run on often needs a significant adjustment for the clock to display the correct time.

The National Institute of Standards and Technology -- the keeper of the atomic clock --has found that computer clocks are inaccurate due to the design limitations of the first PCs. The problem arises from the use of two time keeping systems in every computer. One resides in the computer’s hardware, the other is maintained by the operating system’s software. The hardware clock runs continuously, but is often inaccurate because of design limitations, temperatures changes, and diminished battery voltage. The software clock starts as the computer is booted and is set from the hardware clock. While the software clock is more accurate it relies on the hardware clock (which can be off several minutes each day) for its initial and periodic settings.

"It’s ironic that while today’s computer clock speeds approach 600 MHz, beating some 600 million times a second, the clock hardware is often stuck in slicing the second into just 55 pieces" said Skip Singer, president of Beagle Software. "It is not uncommon for computer users to find their computer clocks off by fifteen or twenty minutes at this time of year."  Beagle Software’s ClockWatch synchronizes a computer’s hardware clock with the atomic clock over the Internet. "It handles the communication with the atomic clock, sets your internal hardware clock and lets you know how much it’s off and when next to set it." added Mr. Singer.

ClockWatch is available for Windows 95 and Window NT and can be downloaded from Beagle Software’s web site ( for a free 30 day trial.

Beagle Software, located in Minneapolis, MN, designs and distributes Windows-based utilities that bring the power of the Internet to the desktop of the user.

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