Some people have had problems setting the time zone on their Windows 11 computer. The options are in the Settings app, but they are grayed out and cannot be changed. Here is the solution.
The problem is that Windows wants to be helpful and to automatically set the time zone for you. It tries to work out where in the world you are located and then it selects the appropriate time zone and sets the clock in Windows.
Mostly this works very well. However, some people, for various reasons, would like to manually select a time zone to use on their computer instead of having it set automatically. Windows 11 does let you do this, but the default settings for many people is for this feature to be disabled.
If you cannot set the time zone manually, the problem could be the settings in Windows location services. If they are not enabled for everything, you may find that the Windows default time zone settings cannot be changed. Here is a step by step guide to enabling the time zone controls and selecting a time zone.
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1: Privacy & security settings
- Open the Windows Settings app by pressing Windows+I.
- Select Privacy & security in the sidebar on the left
- Scroll down the list of items on the right and click Location.
2: Enable location services
- Enable Location services at the top.
- Expand Let apps access your location if necessary.
- Turn on all the switches for all the items.
- Make sure Windows Shell Experience Host is enabled. That’s the important setting.
3: Time & language settings
- Open the Settings app and select Time & language in the sidebar.
- Click Date & time on the right. This is where to set time zones.
4: Manual time zone options
- Turn off the switch, Set the time zone automatically.
- Options that were grayed out and locked now become available.
- Click the time zone.
5: Select a time zone
A list of time zones is displayed. Select the one you want to use.
Set the time zone from the command line
It is possible to set the time zone in Windows from the command prompt and it is easy to do using the tzutil command.
Click the Start button on the taskbar and type command. In the seach window that appears, click the option to run Command Prompt as an administrator. At the command prompt, see the current time zone by typing:
Set the current time zone by adding its name, like this:
tzutil /s “Eastern Standard Time”
If you want to disable daylight saving time (dst), then use a command like this:
tzutil /s “Eastern Standard Time_dstoff”
All you do to disable daylight saving is add _dstoff to the end of the time zone name. You have to get the time zone name exactly right or this command will not work. To see a list of all time zone names, enter this:
That is a lowercase L, not an I or a 1. L for List. The list takes the following format:
(UTC-08:00) Pacific Time (US & Canada)
Pacific Standard Time
It is the second line that should be used, so “Pacific Standard Time” or “Pacific Standard Time_dstoff”. Type exit to close the command prompt window.
If you have problems with this command, check that the time zone name is right. You might also need to make sure Windows Shell Experience Host is enabled in Settings > Privacy & security > Location as described earlier.