[ntp:questions] Re: Basic Question - How often does Client poll Server?

David Woolley david at djwhome.demon.co.uk
Mon Mar 21 18:29:14 UTC 2005

In article <1111417555.262883.141660 at g14g2000cwa.googlegroups.com>,
zev <zevzeg at yahoo.com> wrote:

> NTP Experts,

This isn't an experts question, it is an RTFM one.

> My question is regarding the amount of traffic the NTP protocol will
> generate on the network.  How often does an NTP Client poll the NTP
> Server?  Unlike other IP protocols there doesnt seem to be a fixed

Between once every 2^minpoll and once over 2^maxpoll for each server,
with servers currently unselected tending to the maxpoll end.  These
intervals are nominal and the actual intervals are randomised.

Out of the box, for the reference implemenation, minpoll is 6 and
maxpoll 10, but these are configurable, for each server, using the
configuration file.

If your environment is reasonably stable, the rate will start at once
ever 64 seconds and increase to and settle at once every 1024 seconds,
but it will ramp back down if stability drops, and may settle at another

If Bay networks don't provide a standard NTP configuration file or
other obvious way of setting minpoll and maxpoll, you will have to
ask them.

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