[ntp:questions] Arcron DCF77 ref clock driver:problem with timezone and UTC

Eric Voisard evoisard at MAPS.ON.ieee.org
Mon Mar 21 13:09:21 UTC 2005

Hi Brad,

Thanks for your reply!

"Brad Knowles" <brad at stop.mail-abuse.org> wrote in message

> >  What I can see is that this offset is around 3600 seconds, what
> >  to GMT+1, the local shift in my country...
> >
> >  However, the computer is set to work in GMT time. The /etc/TIMEZONE
file is
> >  set accordingly and the "date" and "date -u" commands give same time,
> >  it's ok.
> NTP always works in UTC.  Regardless of whether it's a refclock
> itself, or a refclock-less server, it always works in UTC.  So, your
> timezone settings have absolutely no impact whatsoever on the
> operation of ntpd.
> If the timezone did come into play, then the system should refuse
> to work at all (since your timezone never changes, only the time
> within that zone), as opposed to starting up okay and then failing
> later.

Oh sorry, I think I was not clear enough in my previous post: ntpd fails
very early, I mean it fails the habitual sanity checks. It never accepts to
synchronize from the refclock (because the difference exceeds 1000s). From
the very first queries, I can see (ntpq -p) that the offset is about one

It's really like if the time provided by the refclock was not UTC but UTC+1
and ntpd taking it as the true UTC.
If I change the date on the computer and I set it to approx. UTC+1 (keeping
its timezone to GMT), then the sanity check passes and the computer time
gets synchronized by ntpd, but to UTC+1.

I think you're right: everything on the computer is UTC, but it looks like
the receiver or the Arcron refclock driver provides ntpd with the wrong UTC

> You've got something else going on.  Maybe some other command
> mucking about with the date/time settings or something.

As far as I can tell there is no other process modifying the time on this

Thanks again, Eric

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