Looker can make time-based data easier to understand by converting it to different time zones. Users can see query results and create filters with time-based data that is converted to their local time zones. For example, a user in New York viewing data created in California doesn’t have to manually subtract three hours to filter or interpret their queries.
Looker converts time-based data when it generates SQL during a query for a Look, an Explore, or a dashboard. The underlying data is not affected; rather, the query results are converted using Looker’s time zone settings. This also means that queries run using SQL Runner do not convert time-based data.
Several settings within Looker specify how to convert time-based data:
- System time zone
- Database Time Zone
- User Specific Time Zones
- Application Time Zone
- Query Time Zone
- convert_tz LookML parameter
- sql LookML parameter
- Database dialect support for time zone conversion