In my Debian 7 OS:

cat /etc/timezone

In one of my friends' Debian 7 OS:

cat /etc/timezone 

Why is it not of the format of Continent/City?

  • 1
    UTC is not a location, so it is a special case and goes into Etc.
    – jw013
    Feb 24 '15 at 14:14

UTC is considered a valid timezone setting in the tz database. It isn't restricted to just continent/city.

You can find a complete list of valid options in this wiki page.

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