Price: $0 (GPL License)

Current Version: 1.0

Date Modified: Oct 12, 2001


Epoch is a laughably simple C program for displaying the time in seconds since the Epoch (Midnight, Jan. 1, 1970). This can be useful for storing an easily and quickly comparable time value in a file with shell scripts, etc. It avoids the overhead of using PERL, etc. (which can be slow to start on old hardware).


What Is Epoch?

Epoch is a SUPER-SIMPLE C program for printing the current time in seconds since the Epoch (Midnight Jan 1, 1970, UTC).

Do I Need Epoch?

Maybe not... If your date(1) command supports the "%s" options (many linux versions do) then you might as well use it, unless you are a hard-core efficiency nut and want the super-streamlined version provided by Epoch. (Really you probably don't need it in this case ;-), and if you do you should write your own version in machine code...)

How Do I Use Epoch?

First you compile it by changing to the Epoch directory and typing ./Build This will invoke cc to build a binary called "epoch". Then you might, optionally, copy epoch to a system-wide directory like /usr/local/bin, and chmod it with 0511 permissions so everyone can use it. (Do this as root.)

Next (perhaps after a "rehash" in the shell), type "epoch" and be amazed at seeing the time displayed in seconds. By default epoch will display the time followed by a new line. If you do not want the new line then simply pass ANY argument to epoch (e.g. "epoch -n"). It really does not matter what you type, it could be anything, as long as there is a space after the command name.

Why the Heck Did You Write This Stupid Thing?

At the time of this writing I could not find a similar function under NetBSD 1.5.2. It took less than five minutes to write. So I felt this was easy.

If you like it, then use it for free (GPL). If you don't like it then delete it!



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