Minus 250,000 years? Really?

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Lion (10.7)' started by Zh2, Jan 23, 2012.

  1. Zh2 macrumors member

    May 21, 2011
    In a house in England.

    A friend of mine recently migrated all her stuff from a Macbook to a new iMac.
    As we started exploring her new 'outer, it became apparent that iChat did not work. I tried iChat on the old machine and that did not work either. Assuming that I had " migrated " the fault. I decided to re-install Lion on the Macbook. Thinking that if the problem was cured I do do the same on the iMac.

    After an age the following message appeared after what I thought was a successful download...

    Time remaining...

    Minus 2,147,483,648 Hours and 15 minutes

    Huh? I reckon that is around 250,000 years. The machine eventually sorted itself out. iChat still does not work ( but I know what the problem is now )

    Any one know what is going on here? If I do get sucked back in time 250,000 years I am going to be really hacked off. No internet. No supermarkets and the dog is going to be really fed up!!


  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    I'd respond, but since the internet, this forum, my Mac and I don't yet exist, I can't! :D
  3. Zh2 thread starter macrumors member

    May 21, 2011
    In a house in England.
    Ha ha!

    Seriously, what is going on here please?

    Regards again.

  4. Dr McKay macrumors 68040

    Dr McKay

    Aug 11, 2010
    I can't help you with the iChat problem, but as for the odd timing given to you for the transfer, I'd think nothing of it. Computers often give wacky transfer times, they're called Mac minutes or Microsoft minutes for a reason ;)

    Ive seen my PC give me an estimate of 80 years for moving a 4.5GB video, and my friends old Macbook Pro would give him an estimate of "About 5 seconds" for almost every single transfer he did.
  5. Phantom Gremlin macrumors regular

    Feb 10, 2010
    Tualatin, Oregon
    After a while you recognize numbers like that.

    The value of "minus 2,147,483,648" happens to be the largest negative value that can fit into a standard "signed 32 bit" integer. Which is often the integer size used by many applications.

    So the programmer is screwing up somehow. He's probably mixing up 32-bit and 64-bit integers, or he's mixing up signed and unsigned arithmetic.

    I agree with the other posters, don't worry about it.

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