[ntp:questions] Single best NTP status indicator of clock accuracy?

unruh unruh at wormhole.physics.ubc.ca
Fri Dec 11 01:23:39 UTC 2009

On 2009-12-10, kjans <kert.jans at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi,
>   I am looking for the best single indicator that can be used to
>   determine/monitor the current clock accuracy.
>   I have several remote/embedded Linux devices that I am monitoring
>   via SNMP and want to monitor a single variable to know how accurate
>   the device thinks its time is.
>   There seems to be several possibilities:
>     - delay or offset or jitter (from ntpq -clpeers)
>     - sync distance (from ntptrace)
>     - maximum error (from ntpdc)
>     - precision (from ntpq -crl)
>     - ?

Offset. That is ntp's best guess as to the difference between the time
on your clock and the true UTC time. ntp keeps no record of the rate
error, or any other error. The jitter is how much teh offset fluctuates
so is a measure of how bad things are on average, delay is useless since
all it tells you is how far away your time source is. 

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