ORA-1804: Failure to Initialize Timezone Information (Doc ID 365558.1)

Last updated on APRIL 10, 2017

Applies to:

Oracle Database - Enterprise Edition - Version 9.0.1.0 to 11.2.0.4 [Release 9.0.1 to 11.2]
Information in this document applies to any platform.
***Checked for relevance on 02-Jul-2016***

Symptoms

This note is applied to Oracle Database Server (not database client).

ORA-1804 indicates that there is a problem with the timezone information that the database keeps. There can be many symptoms that are associated with this.

For example a very simple way of getting this error when there are problems with the timezone information is by attempting to set the session timezone (or the database timezone) to a named timezone:

SQL> alter session set time_zone = 'America/Denver';
alter session set time_zone = 'America/Denver'
*
ERROR at line 1:
ORA-1804: failure to initialize timezone information

However, there are more subtle ways in which a problem with the timezone information can cause problems. For example this error can cause cascading style sheets in Oracle Portal to stop rendering correctly. A typical error stack associated with that problem would look like this:

would give "no rows".

Note if above select from v$timezone_names gives rows then your CURRENT RDBMS DST version is most likley simply to old and missing SOME timezones, in that case see NOTE:412160.1 - Updated DST transitions and new Time Zones in Oracle Time Zone File patches / I) What timezones are known / I'm missing timezones in the Oracle Database?
The exact number of timezones in this view depends on the version of the database you are using, but there should be a minimum of 616 rows in this view.

Cause

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