Transforms a YYYYMMDDHH24MISS timestamp into the specified date/time format.

FormatTime, OutputVar , YYYYMMDDHH24MISS, Format



The name of the output variable in which to store the result.


Leave this parameter blank to use the current local date and time. Otherwise, specify all or the leading part of a timestamp in the YYYYMMDDHH24MISS format. If the date and/or time portion of the timestamp is invalid -- such as February 29th of a non-leap year -- the date and/or time will be omitted from OutputVar. Although only years between 1601 and 9999 are supported, a formatted time can still be produced for earlier years as long as the time portion is valid.


If omitted, it defaults to the time followed by the long date, both of which will be formatted according to the current user's locale. For example: 4:55 PM Saturday, November 27, 2004

Otherwise, specify one or more of the date-time formats below, along with any literal spaces and punctuation in between (commas do not need to be escaped; they can be used normally). In the following example, note that M must be capitalized: M/d/yyyy h:mm tt

Date Formats (case sensitive)

Format Description
d Day of the month without leading zero (1 – 31)
dd Day of the month with leading zero (01 – 31)
ddd Abbreviated name for the day of the week (e.g. Mon) in the current user's language
dddd Full name for the day of the week (e.g. Monday) in the current user's language
M Month without leading zero (1 – 12)
MM Month with leading zero (01 – 12)
MMM Abbreviated month name (e.g. Jan) in the current user's language
MMMM Full month name (e.g. January) in the current user's language
y Year without century, without leading zero (0 – 99)
yy Year without century, with leading zero (00 – 99)
yyyy Year with century. For example: 2005
gg Period/era string for the current user's locale (blank if none)

Time Formats (case sensitive)

Format Description
h Hours without leading zero; 12-hour format (1 – 12)
hh Hours with leading zero; 12-hour format (01 – 12)
H Hours without leading zero; 24-hour format (0 – 23)
HH Hours with leading zero; 24-hour format (00 – 23)
m Minutes without leading zero (0 – 59)
mm Minutes with leading zero (00 – 59)
s Seconds without leading zero (0 – 59)
ss Seconds with leading zero (00 – 59)
t Single character time marker, such as A or P (depends on locale)
tt Multi-character time marker, such as AM or PM (depends on locale)

Standalone Formats

The following formats must be used alone; that is, with no other formats or text present in the Format parameter. These formats are not case sensitive.

Format Description
(Blank) Leave Format blank to produce the time followed by the long date. For example, in some locales it might appear as 4:55 PM Saturday, November 27, 2004
Time Time representation for the current user's locale, such as 5:26 PM
ShortDate Short date representation for the current user's locale, such as 02/29/04
LongDate Long date representation for the current user's locale, such as Friday, April 23, 2004
YearMonth Year and month format for the current user's locale, such as February, 2004
YDay Day of the year without leading zeros (1 – 366)
YDay0 Day of the year with leading zeros (001 – 366)
WDay Day of the week (1 – 7). Sunday is 1.
YWeek The ISO 8601 full year and week number. For example: 200453. If the week containing January 1st has four or more days in the new year, it is considered week 1. Otherwise, it is the last week of the previous year, and the next week is week 1. Consequently, both January 4th and the first Thursday of January are always in week 1.

Additional Options

The following options can appear inside the YYYYMMDDHH24MISS parameter immediately after the timestamp (if there is no timestamp, they may be used alone). In the following example, note the lack of commas between the last four items:

FormatTime, OutputVar, 20040228 LSys D1 D4

R: Reverse. Have the date come before the time (meaningful only when Format is blank).

Ln: If this option is not present, the current user's locale is used to format the string. To use the system's locale instead, specify LSys. To use a specific locale, specify the letter L followed by a hexadecimal or decimal locale identifier (LCID). For information on how to construct an LCID, search for the following phrase: Locale Identifiers

Dn: Date options. Specify for n one of the following numbers:

Tn: Time options. Specify for n one of the following numbers:

Note: Dn and Tn may be repeated to put more than one option into effect, such as this example: FormatTime, OutputVar, 20040228 D2 D4 T1 T8


Letters and numbers that you want to be transcribed literally from Format into OutputVar should be enclosed in single quotes as in this example: 'Date:' MM/dd/yy 'Time:' hh:mm:ss tt.

By contrast, non-alphanumeric characters such as spaces, tabs, linefeeds (`n), slashes, colons, commas, and other punctuation do not need to be enclosed in single quotes. The exception to this is the single quote character itself: to produce it literally, use four consecutive single quotes (''''), or just two if the quote is already inside an outer pair of quotes.

If Format contains date and time elements together, they must not be intermixed. In other words, the string should be dividable into two halves: a time half and a date half. For example, a format string consisting of "hh yyyy mm" would not produce the expected result because it has a date element in between two time elements.

When Format contains a numeric day of the month (either d or dd) followed by the full month name (MMMM), the genitive form of the month name is used (if the language has a genitive form).

If Format contains more than 2000 characters, OutputVar will be made blank.

On a related note, addition and subtraction of dates and times can be performed with EnvAdd and EnvSub.

To convert in the reverse direction -- that is, from a formatted date/time to YYYYMMDDHH24MISS format -- see

See also: Gui DateTime control, Format(), SetFormat, Transform, built-in date and time variables, FileGetTime


Demonstrates different usages.

FormatTime, TimeString
MsgBox The current time and date (time first) is %TimeString%.

FormatTime, TimeString, R
MsgBox The current time and date (date first) is %TimeString%.

FormatTime, TimeString,, Time
MsgBox The current time is %TimeString%.

FormatTime, TimeString, T12, Time
MsgBox The current 24-hour time is %TimeString%.

FormatTime, TimeString,, LongDate
MsgBox The current date (long format) is %TimeString%.

FormatTime, TimeString, 20050423220133, dddd MMMM d, yyyy hh:mm:ss tt
MsgBox The specified date and time, when formatted, is %TimeString%.

FormatTime, TimeString, 200504, 'Month Name': MMMM`n'Day Name': dddd
MsgBox %TimeString%

FormatTime, YearWeek, 20050101, YWeek
MsgBox January 1st of 2005 is in the following ISO year and week number: %YearWeek%

Changes the date-time stamp of a file.

FileSelectFile, FileName, 3,, Pick a file
if (FileName = "")  ; The user didn't pick a file.
FileGetTime, FileTime, %FileName%
FormatTime, FileTime, %FileTime%   ; Since the last parameter is omitted, the long date and time are retrieved.
MsgBox The selected file was last modified at %FileTime%.

Converts the specified number of seconds into the corresponding number of hours, minutes, and seconds (hh:mm:ss format).

MsgBox % FormatSeconds(7384)  ; 7384 = 2 hours + 3 minutes + 4 seconds. It yields: 2:03:04

FormatSeconds(NumberOfSeconds)  ; Convert the specified number of seconds to hh:mm:ss format.
    time := 19990101  ; *Midnight* of an arbitrary date.
    time += NumberOfSeconds, seconds
    FormatTime, mmss, %time%, mm:ss
    return NumberOfSeconds//3600 ":" mmss
    ; Unlike the method used above, this would not support more than 24 hours worth of seconds:
    FormatTime, hmmss, %time%, h:mm:ss
    return hmmss