[ntp:questions] Re: Router Vendor + NTP

John Pettitt jpp at cloudview.com
Fri Jun 10 00:00:43 UTC 2005

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David Carne wrote:
> C.P.T.N members,
> I work for a small router vendor, and we're just about to release our
> first product. We plan to use NTP to synchronize the times on our
> devices, but we want to be good netizens, and run our own ntp
> infrastructure for our devices.
> Does anyone have any advice on this? AKA, expectations of what we'll
> need in terms of bandwidth / what kind of server hardware we'll need?
> We expect to have eventually 100k+ devices out there, and the devices
> will probably synchronize one a week or so. [we have no need of really
> really accurate timekeeping].
> So in summary, do you all think I can do this with a single powerful
> box? or should I do something with round robin dns load balancing?
> Apologies for the intrusion, but after reading all the discussion about
> how some router vendors abuse the system, we want to make sure we do
> things the right way.
> Sincerely,
> David Carne

#1 make the address configurable - by all means default to your
infrastructure but please give customers the ability to use their own

#2 if it really is only once a week then a single server in a rack
will do it.  My public server (a 1.7Ghz AMD running FreeBSD) in the
public pool.ntp.org is managing over half a million request a day with
almost no cpu load.

#3 making the poll time random between units is going to be a key to
leveling the load.

#4 given that it's not really a high load I'd go with a couple of
boxes on round robin DNS in geographically diverse data centers - add
more boxes if/when needed.

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