Windows Server: Configuring as a NTP Network Time Server

December 22, 2017 by  Filed under: Computer 
 

Precision andtime synchronisation is highly important for modern computer networks, without synchronisationmany time sensitive transactions would be impossible to carry out. The intern…

Precision andtime synchronisation is highly important for modern computer networks, without synchronisationmany time sensitive transactions would be impossible to carry out.

 

The internalclock in computers does keep time and date information but these Real TimeChips are not designed to keep perfect time as computers are mass produced andoptimized for low cost rather than being perfect clocks.

 

Of course for alot of applications this can be more than adequate but for time-sensitivetransactions such as online purchasing not having a network that issynchronised can cause errors in transactions and can even leave the networkvulnerable to fraud.

 

FortunatelyWindows Server from 2000 onwards has a time synchronisation utility built incall windows time (w32time.exe) this can be configured to allow the machine tobe used as time server.

 

Windowstime uses a form of NTP (Network Time Protocol) which was developed over 20 years ago. It uses analgorithm to synchronise time on a network. NTP(version 4) can maintain time over the public Internet to within 10milliseconds (1/100th of a second) and can perform even better overLANs with accuracies of 200 microseconds (1/5000th of a second)under ideal conditions.

 

NTP uses a single time reference and synchronisesall machines on the network to that time. Itcan be configured to both synchronise a network using the internal clock or anexternal time source.

 

Note:Microsoft strongly recommends that you configure a time server with a hardwaresource rather than from the internet where there is no authentication.

 

To configure the Windows Time service to use anexternal time source, click Start, Run and type regedit then click OK.

 

Locate the subkey:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\W32Time\Parameters

Right-click Type then Modify, in edit Value type NTPin the Value data box then OK.

 

Right click ReliableTimeSource, then click Modify.

In the Edit DWORD Value box, under Value Data, type0, then click OK.

 

Right-click NtpServer in the right pane then clickModify.

In Edit Value, type the Domain Name System (DNS), each DNS must be unique.

Nowclick Ok.

 

To set the poll intervals locate:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\W32Time\Parameters

In the right pane, right-click Period, then clickModify.

In the Edit DWORD Value box, under Value Data, type24 then OK

Exit Registry Editor

 

ClickStart, then Run then type the following and press Enter:

Netstop w32time && net start w32time

 

Network Time Protocol (NTP) is an Internet protocolused for the transfer of accurate time, providing time information along sothat a precise time can be obtained

 

To enable the Network Time Protocol; NTPserver,locate and click:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\W32Time\TimeProviders\NtpServer\

Inthe right pane, right-click Enabled, then click Modify.

Inthe Edit DWord Value box, type 1 under Value data, then click OK.

 

Now go back and click on

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\W32Time\Parameters\NtpServer

Inthe right pane, right-click NtpServer, then Modify, in the Edit DWORD Valueunder Value Data type In the right pane, right-click NtpServer, then Modify, inthe Edit DWORD Value under Value Data type the Domain Name System (DNS), each DNS must be unique and youmust append 0x1 to the end of each DNS name otherwise changes will not takeeffect.

Nowclick Ok.

 

Locate and click the following

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\W32Time\TimeProviders\NtpClient\SpecialPollInterval

Inthe right pane, right-click SpecialPollInterval, then click Modify.

Inthe Edit DWORD Value box, under Value Data, type the number of seconds you wantfor each poll, ie 900 will poll every 15 minutes, then click OK.

 

Toconfigure the time correction settings, locate:

 HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\W32Time\config

 In the right pane, right-clickMaxPosPhaseCorrection, then Modify, in the Edit DWORD Value box, under Base,click Decimal, under Value Data, type a time in seconds such as 3600 (an hour)then click OK.

 

Nowgo back and click:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\W32Time\config

Inthe right pane, right-click MaxNegPhaseCorrection, then Modify.

Inthe Edit DWORD box under base, click Decimal, under value data type the time inseconds you want to poll such as 3600 (polls in one hour)

 

ExitRegistry Editor

Nowto restart windows time service, click Start, Run (or alternatively use thecommand prompt facility) and type:

netstop w32time && net start w32time

 

Andon each computer, other than the time server, type:

W32tm/-s andthe time server should be up and running

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