Advisory: Iraq may not observe daylight saving time this year
As I initially reported, we now have it on reasonable authority that Iraq will not switch to daylight saving time as they have in the past, and as noted online and on the Hot Topics for Daylight Saving Time changes site. As we have more information, we will post it to the Hot Topics page. It appears that this change will go ahead, but unfortunately there's no official notice on a government site that confirms this information...
Microsoft has created guidance and is creating specific product hotfixes (where applicable) in response to news reports that indicate Iraq will not recognize or utilize daylight saving time in 2008. IT professionals and systems administrators should review their systems and installations, and determine is any users or systems will be impacted by this potential change not to use DST in Iraq this year.
Chances are that your system will not be impacted unless you are using the Baghdad time zone: if you are, then your local time setting and appointments may be off if in fact the country decides not to use DST this year. I've learned that there are customers in the region who use the Kuwait and Riyadh time zone setting, which has the same offset at Baghdad and does not observe DST in 2008. And many other customers use GMT or Zulu time, and as such would not be affected by the change.
Microsoft recognizes this as a potential change and provides guidance to customers and partners should they have systems that may be impacted by this change in Iraq, as noted in this technical-guidance post on the Microsoft Daylight Saving Time & Time Zone FAQs Blog.
Background – Iraq Daylight Saving Time changes for 2008
Microsoft has learned of a possible change to the observance of Daylight Saving Time (DST) in Iraq that could impact customers using the Baghdad time zone which is also called the Arabic time zone (GMT +03:00). We have unofficial reports that the Ministry of Iraq has decided that the country will no longer observe DST as they have in prior years, which has historically taken effect on April 1, 2008. This may impact customers and partners in the region who use the Baghdad time zone, including military facilities and other entities engaged in business in or with the region. We are actively working with members of the military and US government agencies to confirm the change. At this time it appears that the change is likely but that could be reversed at any time.
Current status of required updates
The product groups are actively engaged and working on building the updates required to lead our affected customers through the coming change....
For a summary of the current status of affected products and estimated dates when hotfixes, see in this technical-guidance post.
For more updates, check out this post on how to get updates to DST and time zone updates and alerts.