AT&T has tested and is now buying 150,000 licenses for PCFix2000, a new product being launched Oct. 26 by an Atlanta-based startup, About Time Group. The product corrects the date and time in the CMOS (real-time clock), BIOS (basic input/output system, including the Award 4.50G BIOS), and operating systems of IBM-compatible PCs and laptops for year 2000 compliance.
The need for a year 2000 fix of the CMOS has been debated by PC makers because applications get their date and time from the BIOS, which can be patched to correct the date and time it receives from the real-time clock. Compaq, which has been criticized for ads touting year 2000-ready PCs when only the BIOS were compliant, now plans to make a CMOS patch available on Web site soon.
Many scientific, manufacturing, and custom applications go directly to the CMOS, says Greg Morrison, chief technology officer at About Time Group. The product retails for $94.95 per user, and may be deployed from the server. AT&T is deploying PCFix2000 on servers throughout the United States and Canada.