[ntp:questions] Re: Need ntpdate *tool* not *counselor*

mayer mayer at gis.net
Fri Jun 3 02:55:07 UTC 2005

----- Original Message Follows -----
> What part of "2 hours by helicopter from Kuala Lumpur" did you not 
> recognize as indicating exactly that?  We Be Isolated!

Oh I understood every syllable.

> Those 2 hours are spent over water btw.
At least that's not over high mountain peaks...

> Kazakhstan was not a joke... I've gotten Startup & Service calls from 
> that part of the world.
> Never in the nice clean cities (*cough*), we're at the
> well-farm/storage-farm/refinery  plant  way out that-a-way from
> anything we'd call a nice clean city.
> We're also onboard drilling ships way-out-wherever.  We're also on
> floating  (anchored) well-head->holding docks for passing tankers in
> probably a thousand  feet of water.  Getting more remote requires a
> wet suit, or a hard vacuum suit, or a high tolerance for breathing
> difficulties.
> So, yes, we're an isolated not-work(sic) w.r.t. synching time with 
> anything else on this planet.  Evolution being what it is, a desire
> for  satellite-based time feed will eventually trickle down this
> industry to the  point that there will be some reliable time master
> such that logs can be  compared between two distant ships/plants.  For
> now, getting the several  embedded alarm processors and their master
> agreeing what the time is  not only suffices, it is the best I can
> hope for.

None of this surprises me except that things like oil rigs will have
GPS anyway. Making use of it should be a piece of cake. Obviously
you don't have that option.

> Some folk have suggested having the Stratum16 Master lie helpfully by 
> claiming Stratum10 status so that we'll all be equally wrong together,
> and  our records will then agree.  Good suggestion, prima facie; now
> I'm trying  to figure out how to make a WinXp{home|pro} system serve
> time a-la-RFC for *any* version of (Linux) ntp.

Stratum 16 means don't trust this clock for anything (assuming it's
reachable at all).

> Best results so far in this direction is by disabling Windows Time
> Service  and installing & auto-starting the freeware "Absolute Time
> Server".
I have no clue what "Absolute TIme Server" is, but that doesn't matter.

> How to configure the WinXp box to assert that it is a Stratum10 
> device is still in the fog.
> rdate may prove fruitful also, if time zone issues can be resolved.
It's unlikely to be available on Windows. It's a Unix tool.

> P.S. These system have no operator, ever.  The linux kernel has no
> console. The startup & Service folk can putty in via etherlan, and
> edit a flat text  configuration file to add or remove '#' comment
> characters... 

Well we hope that they can do more than just add or remove '#' comment
characters or you may well need that passport...

> ...if I ask for more than that they start sharpening knives and asking
> me if my passport is up to date.  They'll make sure I get the
> necessary shots...

Picky guys...

I suggest you look at Maarten's advice to implement ntp using an
isolated local clock.


> Brian Brunner
> brian.t.brunner at gai-tronics.com
> (610)796-5838

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