What is a Unix timestamp converter

Unix Time Converter

Unix Time Converter is a tool to assist converting 64-bit Unix time to a human readable format. Unix time, which is also known as Epoch time or POSIX time, is a 32-bit system designed to represent specific points in time, defined as the number of seconds that has elapsed since midnight January 1, 1970 UTC. It does not count leap seconds that have taken place since.

With the help of our Unix Time Converter you can instantly convert a Unix Timestamp to a human readable format by simply pasting the timestamp into the search field and press convert. Likewise, you can use the Unix Time Converter to convert any date and time into epoch time.

This time system is wildly used in Unix-based operating systems as well as several other computer systems and file formats. It is a convenient way for computers to measure elapsed time, provided the start date was not before 1970. Humans however, are depending on Unix time converter to be able to make any sense of the decimal digits.

As Unix Time is missing the leap seconds that are included into standard UTC time is neither a linear representation of time nor a correct representation of UTC, although it is often mistaken to be both.

Party like it’s 1234567890

23:31:30 February 13, 2009 UTC (that’s 6:31:30 Eastern time and 3:31:30 p.m Pacific time) represented all ten decimal digits in sequence as the Unix time clock hit exactly 1234567890, meaning 1.2 billion seconds had passed since Unix time began in 1970. This event was marked by large celebrations in Los Angeles, Vancouver, San Francisco, Seattle and many more locations around the globe.

The Y2K38 problem

Many of us still remember the hysteria surrounding the now infamous Y2K bug, or millennium bug. The year 2000 problem started out as a cost saving measure used by software developers when programming mainframes. The developers figured that instead of writing out all four digits of a year, like 1970, one could save a few bytes of storage by only writing out the two last digits, like 70. Data storage was extremely costly at the time and a correctly formatted year took up a lot of expensive space that could be utilized for better things.

As the year 2000 slowly approached, the same developers started realizing that computers might not interpret 00 as year 2000 but rather 1900. And hence, the Y2K bug was born.

The Y2K38-bug could be even worse and is centred around the Unix time being a 32-bit integer. Computers having a 32-bit central processor can handle a maximum of 2,147,483,647 seconds meaning that any number higher that that cannot be stored. Using a Unix Time Converter tells us that the Unix timestamp 2,147,483,647 is on January 19, 2038 and would mark the end of the 32-bit Unix time implementation. At this point, the integer will be “full” and start again at -2,147,483,648 which corresponds to 20:45 December 13, 1901 UTC.

However, and fortunately for all of us, most of our computer systems have already switched to a 64-bit based system and even more by the year 2038. A Unix Time implementation on a 64-bit system would cease to work on December 4, 292,277,026,596 at 15:30:08 UTC. That means that in 292,277,026,457,6 years we would be forced to have figured out a different time tracking system for computers. But no need to worry, by then the Sun would have theoretically expanded to a red giant and swallowed the Earth. And humanity would have to be living on a distant planet by then for this to remotely be considered an issue.

The Unix Time Converter tells us that December 4, 292,277,026,596 at 15:30:07 UTC would give us a Unix Timestamp of 9223372036854772207.

Why to use Unix timestamp

Since Unix time is calculated from a single point in time it is interoperated the same regardless of region or time zone. This is the reason why it has become wildly accepted and the preferred choice by many web developers for storing and manipulating dates and time.

Unix timestamp milestones

Click on a milestone to learn more about that specifc point in time.

Programmers help

For your conveniance, we have created a list on how to get the Unix timestamp in serveral of the most popular programming lanugages and systems, sorted in alphabetical order.

C#var epoch = (DateTime.UtcNow - new DateTime(1970, 1, 1, 0, 0, 0, DateTimeKind.Utc)).TotalSeconds;
Goimport "time"
Haskellimport Data.Time.Clock.POSIX
JavascriptMath.round(new Date().getTime()/1000)
Linuxdate +%s
Pythonimport time;
Rubyrequire 'date'

No matter if you are a web developer or a software engineer, the Unix Time Converter is here to assist.