Parsing date string in golang

Asked by At

I tried parsing date string "2014-09-12T11:45:26.371Z" in go lang.

Code

layout := "2014-09-12T11:45:26.371Z"
str := "2014-11-12T11:45:26.371Z"
t, err := time.Parse(layout , str)

parsing time "2014-11-12T11:47:39.489Z": month out of range

I got this error.

How to parse this date string?

6 Answers

108
RickyA On

Use the exact layout numbers described here and a nice blogpost here.

so:

layout := "2006-01-02T15:04:05.000Z"
str := "2014-11-12T11:45:26.371Z"
t, err := time.Parse(layout, str)

if err != nil {
    fmt.Println(err)
}
fmt.Println(t)

gives:

>> 2014-11-12 11:45:26.371 +0000 UTC

I know. Mind boggling. Also caught me first time. Go just doesn't use an abstract syntax for datetime components (YYYY-MM-DD), but these exact numbers (I think the time of the first commit of go Nope, according to this. Does anyone know?).

63
VonC On

The layout to use is indeed "2006-01-02T15:04:05.000Z" described in RickyA's answer.
It isn't "the time of the first commit of go", but rather a mnemonic way to remember said layout.
See pkg/time:

The reference time used in the layouts is:

Mon Jan 2 15:04:05 MST 2006

which is Unix time 1136239445.
Since MST is GMT-0700, the reference time can be thought of as

 01/02 03:04:05PM '06 -0700

(1,2,3,4,5,6,7, provided you remember that 1 is for the month, and 2 for the day, which is not easy for an European like myself, used to the day-month date format)

As illustrated in "time.parse : why does golang parses the time incorrectly?", that layout (using 1,2,3,4,5,6,7) must be respected exactly.

33
robstarbuck On

As answered but to save typing out "2006-01-02T15:04:05.000Z" for the layout, you could use the package's constant RFC3339.

str := "2014-11-12T11:45:26.371Z"
t, err := time.Parse(time.RFC3339, str)

if err != nil {
    fmt.Println(err)
}
fmt.Println(t)

https://play.golang.org/p/Dgu2ZvHwTh

3
srf On

This might be super late, but this is for people that might stumble on this problem and might want to use external package for parsing date string.

I've tried looking for a libraries and I found this one:

https://github.com/araddon/dateparse

Example from the README:

package main

import (
    "flag"
    "fmt"
    "time"

    "github.com/apcera/termtables"
    "github.com/araddon/dateparse"
)

var examples = []string{
    "May 8, 2009 5:57:51 PM",
    "Mon Jan  2 15:04:05 2006",
    "Mon Jan  2 15:04:05 MST 2006",
    "Mon Jan 02 15:04:05 -0700 2006",
    "Monday, 02-Jan-06 15:04:05 MST",
    "Mon, 02 Jan 2006 15:04:05 MST",
    "Tue, 11 Jul 2017 16:28:13 +0200 (CEST)",
    "Mon, 02 Jan 2006 15:04:05 -0700",
    "Thu, 4 Jan 2018 17:53:36 +0000",
    "Mon Aug 10 15:44:11 UTC+0100 2015",
    "Fri Jul 03 2015 18:04:07 GMT+0100 (GMT Daylight Time)",
    "12 Feb 2006, 19:17",
    "12 Feb 2006 19:17",
    "03 February 2013",
    "2013-Feb-03",
    //   mm/dd/yy
    "3/31/2014",
    "03/31/2014",
    "08/21/71",
    "8/1/71",
    "4/8/2014 22:05",
    "04/08/2014 22:05",
    "4/8/14 22:05",
    "04/2/2014 03:00:51",
    "8/8/1965 12:00:00 AM",
    "8/8/1965 01:00:01 PM",
    "8/8/1965 01:00 PM",
    "8/8/1965 1:00 PM",
    "8/8/1965 12:00 AM",
    "4/02/2014 03:00:51",
    "03/19/2012 10:11:59",
    "03/19/2012 10:11:59.3186369",
    // yyyy/mm/dd
    "2014/3/31",
    "2014/03/31",
    "2014/4/8 22:05",
    "2014/04/08 22:05",
    "2014/04/2 03:00:51",
    "2014/4/02 03:00:51",
    "2012/03/19 10:11:59",
    "2012/03/19 10:11:59.3186369",
    // Chinese
    "2014年04月08日",
    //   yyyy-mm-ddThh
    "2006-01-02T15:04:05+0000",
    "2009-08-12T22:15:09-07:00",
    "2009-08-12T22:15:09",
    "2009-08-12T22:15:09Z",
    //   yyyy-mm-dd hh:mm:ss
    "2014-04-26 17:24:37.3186369",
    "2012-08-03 18:31:59.257000000",
    "2014-04-26 17:24:37.123",
    "2013-04-01 22:43",
    "2013-04-01 22:43:22",
    "2014-12-16 06:20:00 UTC",
    "2014-12-16 06:20:00 GMT",
    "2014-04-26 05:24:37 PM",
    "2014-04-26 13:13:43 +0800",
    "2014-04-26 13:13:44 +09:00",
    "2012-08-03 18:31:59.257000000 +0000 UTC",
    "2015-09-30 18:48:56.35272715 +0000 UTC",
    "2015-02-18 00:12:00 +0000 GMT",
    "2015-02-18 00:12:00 +0000 UTC",
    "2017-07-19 03:21:51+00:00",
    "2014-04-26",
    "2014-04",
    "2014",
    "2014-05-11 08:20:13,787",
    // mm.dd.yy
    "3.31.2014",
    "03.31.2014",
    "08.21.71",
    //  yyyymmdd and similar
    "20140601",
    // unix seconds, ms
    "1332151919",
    "1384216367189",
}

var (
    timezone = ""
)

func main() {
    flag.StringVar(&timezone, "timezone", "UTC", "Timezone aka `America/Los_Angeles` formatted time-zone")
    flag.Parse()

    if timezone != "" {
        // NOTE:  This is very, very important to understand
        // time-parsing in go
        loc, err := time.LoadLocation(timezone)
        if err != nil {
            panic(err.Error())
        }
        time.Local = loc
    }

    table := termtables.CreateTable()

    table.AddHeaders("Input", "Parsed, and Output as %v")
    for _, dateExample := range examples {
        t, err := dateparse.ParseLocal(dateExample)
        if err != nil {
            panic(err.Error())
        }
        table.AddRow(dateExample, fmt.Sprintf("%v", t))
    }
    fmt.Println(table.Render())
}
7
Nishant Rawat On

I will suggest using time.RFC3339 constant from time package. You can check other constants from time package. https://golang.org/pkg/time/#pkg-constants

package main

import (
    "fmt"
    "time"
)

func main() {
    fmt.Println("Time parsing");
    dateString := "2014-11-12T11:45:26.371Z"
    time1, err := time.Parse(time.RFC3339,dateString);
    if err!=nil {
    fmt.Println("Error while parsing date :", err);
    }
    fmt.Println(time1); 
}
4
Loren Osborn On

This is rather late to the party, and not really saying anything that hasn't been already said in one form or another, mostly through links above, but I wanted to give a TL;DR recap to those with less attention span:

The date and time of the go format string is very important. It's how Go knows which field is which. They are generally 1-9 left to right as follows:

  • January / Jan / january / jan / 01 / _1 (etc) are for month
  • 02 / _2 are for day of month
  • 15 / 03 / _3 / PM / P / pm /p are for hour & meridian (3pm)
  • 04 / _4 are for minutes
  • 05 / _5 are for seconds
  • 2006 / 06 are for year
  • -0700 / 07:00 / MST are for timezone
  • .999999999 / .000000000 etc are for partial seconds (I think the distinction is if trailing zeros are removed)
  • Mon / Monday are day of the week (which 01-02-2006 actually was),

So, Don't write "01-05-15" as your date format, unless you want "Month-Second-Hour"

(... again, this was basically a summary of above.)