[ntp:hackers] ntpdate removal is coming

Brian Utterback brian.utterback at oracle.com
Mon Jul 25 20:20:34 UTC 2011

On 07/24/11 02:44, Harlan Stenn wrote:
> My preference is that we make sure we get rid of the need to set the
> clock before starting ntpd.
> H

I have run into a bit of a snag regarding ntpdate and ntpdc. You may or
may not know that Solaris has certain policies regarding the removal or
changing of user programs and libraries. We can only make certain
changes at certain points in the release cycle. The development of
Solaris 11 is at a stage that I can only make minor changes to it. I
currently have 4.2.5p200 integrated and it will ship with that.

What that means is, if I ship ntpdate and ntpdc in Solaris 11, I cannot
stop shipping them until Solaris 12. This means that I can only update
Solaris 11 to the last NTP version that includes them until Solaris 12

So, I have three alternatives. One is that I don't ship ntpdate and/or
ntpdc in Solaris 11. I don't know if ntpd in 4.2.5p200 is an adequate
replacement or not. But I do know that ntpq in 4.2.5p200 does not
replace ntpdc.

Two, I update to the last ntp-dev that has them included, whatever that
turns out to be.

Three, I replace ntpdate and/or ntpdc with something that takes the same
command line arguments and subcommands and implements the same
functionality. Typically this would be a shell script that munges the
flags and calls another program. Or something like what was done with

So, if ntpd in 4.2.5p200 is a good replacement for ntpdate, I could not
ship that. This would be good if the removal of ntpdc is not planned for
as early a time as ntpdate. But if both of them are in imminent danger,
then this would not help.

So, I need some advice. Could ntpdate and ntpdc be kept in the distro
but not built or installed by default? Does anybody happen to know what
functionality was missing from ntpd regarding the ntpdate functions?


Always code as if the guy who ends up maintaining your code will be a
violent psychopath who knows where you live. - Martin Golding
Brian Utterback - Solaris RPE, Oracle Corporation.
Ph:603-262-3916, Em:brian.utterback at oracle.com

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