[ntp:questions] Re: how many servers should I poll?

Brian Garrett mgy1912 at cox.net
Mon Aug 11 07:38:34 UTC 2003

"David L. Mills" <mills at udel.edu> wrote in message
news:bh70ko$rim$1 at dewey.udel.edu...
> Brian,
> Not to put too fine a point on it, but the recent debacle flood of NTP
> packets at U Wisconsin will scare the pants off any ISPs that know about
> it. Heck, it scares the pants off me.
> Dave

_Your_ concern, I can understand; the U. of Delaware is not an ISP and
shouldn't be in the position of having to provide network time services to
the whole world (even though you have been graciously doing so for the last
couple of decades).  But why should an ISP fear (legitimate) network traffic
from its own users?  NTP may not be as familiar as FTP, HTTP or other
protocols, but it's just as vital and any ISP that can't set up its server
to handle traffic from its own users shouldn't be in the business.  As an
ancient Middle Eastern religious fundamentalist once said, "Count the cost."

I can hear the objections now: "Yes, they should be able to handle traffic
that comes in from their own users, but what about inquiries from outside?"
Welllllp...if more ISPs would do more to educate their users about their
time servers (all it would take would be a few paragraphs on their home
page), people could use their own provider's NTP servers to sync their PC's
and wouldn't *have* to go outside their own dotcom to do it.  Most ISP's
time servers are running at stratum 2 or 3 and so users taking advantage of
said systems wouldn't have to go running to tick.usno.navy.mil and the like
(especially once they understood that a strat-3 with a light load is likely
to be more stable than a strat-1 with a heavy load, even if it *is*
connected to the USNO).
Imagine that, NTP working just as intended.  You may say I'm a dreamer, but
I'm not the only one...


More information about the questions mailing list