March 6, 2007
Windows NTP Client
I've had a Network Time Protocol (NTP) server running in my home network for many years. The two workstation dual boot Windows and Linux. When running Linux, the ntpd daemon keeps them in sync with my NTP server. When running Windows, I haven't bothered, as there isn't anything running under windows that cares about time at all, and since they run Linux most of the time.
Today, I decided to figure out how to keep Windows client's clock synchronized with NTP. A quick Google search located an NIST PDF document titled, "Configuring Windows 2000 and Windows XP to use NIST Time Servers." There is also a link in the introductory pages of that document to the freely available download from Microsoft to enable Windows NT systems to be configured as NTP clients.
As it turns out, it's really easy to configure Windows 2000 and Windows XP Professional, as they both have native, out-of-the-box support to run as a NTP clients. So, to boil down the NIST's 12 page document, open a "DOS prompt" command shell as a user with admin rights and run:
> net /setsntp:servername > net stop w32time > net start w32time
You could also use the Time/Date control panel. When I tried it (first) on one of my boxes, it had the default configuration of using a Microsoft time server already configured. When I changed it in that dialog box to use my time server, it griped that it wouldn't use the time I was providing as the server's stratum was lower than the host's. I wonder what goofy things Microsoft's time server is doing, as my time server is stratum 2. Anyway, I ran those three commands and it successfully switched over to using my NTP server.
You would think that the fact that Windows 2000 and Windows XP have the NTP client built-in would be one of those things that I would have already "just known." Well, I didn't, but now I do.
Posted by lamontp at March 6, 2007 11:06 AM