[ntp:questions] Re: ntpd -x

Joel Shellman joelshellman at yahoo.com
Thu Jan 26 18:59:44 UTC 2006

--- "David L. Mills" <mills at udel.edu> wrote:
> The only thing the -x option does is change the step
> threshold to 600 s, 
> or ten minutes. I find it mighty curious that you
> would consider a large 
> discrepancy like that within acceptable bounds for a
> any consistent 
> distributed data system, but that's not my call.

I plan to run ntpd -q -g upon system startup, so that
discrepancy "should" never happen. However, the most
important requirement is to have a sequential clock so
that timestamps on audit logs are sequential. Also,
this is in an isolated environment--probably won't be
using public servers.

> Note that the tinkers disable all steps for any
> reason, including a step 
> at startup. If you need that, you will need another
> program or to start 
> ntpd in ntpdate mode before launching the daemon.

Right, which we're planning on doing anyway.

You made me think though. It sounds like what we
really want is:

tinker panic 5 # or some appropriately small number
tinker step 0

After running ntpd -q -g on system startup, we should
have the same clock. So long as the clocks aren't so
incredibly off as to lose or gain 5 seconds, we should
stay within 5 seconds and never clock step. And if we
get 5 seconds off, ntpd dies, alarms go off and
someone manually figures out why the clocks aren't
able to stay within 5 seconds of each other.

Thank you very much for your help.


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