[ntp:questions] Re: Why ntpd is losing out to openntp at OpenBSD

David L. Mills mills at udel.edu
Sat Oct 16 00:21:57 UTC 2004


What might have bitten you about documentation inconsistency might be 
the fact that the documentation on the web at www.ntp.org is for the 
latest features in the current tarball snapshot. This might not match 
older documentation included in the distribution you might happen to 
use. So, use the documentation that came with your particular 
distribution. If for some reason you do not have access to the 
documentation for your version, it should be available from the ISC 
archives via www.ntp.org.


Brad Knowles wrote:
> At 9:55 PM +0000 2004-10-14, Garrett Wollman wrote:
>>  1) SNTP is sufficient for most end systems' requirements.
>     Properly implemented, that might be true.  IMO, OpenNTPd is not a 
> proper implementation of SNTP.  If you want that, consider msntp instead.
>>  2) The security posture of UDel's code base makes many people
>>  uncomfortable.
>     In what way?  The fact that we actually support authentication?
>>  2a) UDel's code base is very large and results in great deal of
>>  repo churn every time a new version is imported.
>     We're trying to incorporate improvements from a wide variety of 
> sources to a wide variety of places in the codebase, and to do so as 
> quickly as we reasonably can in a volunteer project.  If you would 
> prefer that we do less, we can fire most of the volunteers and make sure 
> that there are relatively few code changes that get made.
>>  3) Deprecation of ntpdate has angered many users.
>     This is little more than an education problem.  We never should have 
> allowed ntpdate to be modified in all the multitudinous ways it was, and 
> we should have incorporated the necessary features into ntpd instead.  
> Almost all the features required are now incorporated into ntpd, and if 
> people continue to gripe you could set up a hard link for the program 
> name "ntpdate".
>>  4) Difficulty of keeping manual pages up-to-date with changes in UDel
>>  documentation.
>     We're working on that.  Now that the public support services have 
> been moved to ISC, that may be easier to keep in sync.
>>  That said, there seems to be a consensus that openntpd is
>>  insufficiently mature to take over at this time.  You are invited to
>>  look at the FreeBSD mailing-list archives for a more detailed
>>  discussion.
>     I've been on the FreeBSD mailing lists for several years.  I have 
> yet to see a single extensive discussion of NTP or ntpd on those lists.  
> If I've missed some extensive discussion of NTP or ntpd, please let me 
> know which lists those have been on.
>     If you want to seriously consider OpenNTPd, then I would encourage 
> you to look at 
> <http://bradknowles.typepad.com/considered_harmful/2004/09/openntpd.html> 
> and make sure that you have answered in your own mind how you're going 
> to deal with all these problems.

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