[ntp:questions] Finding out where ntpd gets its ntp.conf file

Richard B. Gilbert rgilbert88 at comcast.net
Fri Sep 5 18:27:21 UTC 2008

Joseph Gwinn wrote:
> In article <IcudnXpoB7jlaSLVnZ2dnUVZ_tninZ2d at comcast.com>,
>  "Richard B. Gilbert" <rgilbert88 at comcast.net> wrote:
>> Joseph Gwinn wrote:
>>> In article <30s4p5-as9.ln1 at gateway.py.meinberg.de>,
>>>  Martin Burnicki <martin.burnicki at meinberg.de> wrote:
>>>> Joe,
>>>> Joseph Gwinn wrote:
>>>>> In article <48bf5d9c$0$21355$c30e37c6 at pit-reader.telstra.net>,
>>>>>  "Peter J. Cherny" <peterc at luddite.com.au> wrote:
>>>>>> Joseph Gwinn wrote:
>>>>>>> ...
>>>>>>> Which brings me to a question:  How does one get NTP to tell you
>>>>>>> exactly where it is getting such things as the ntp.conf file from, all
>>>>>>> without
>>>>>>  >...
>>>>>> [peterc at tantalus ~]$ strings /usr/sbin/ntpd|grep ntp.conf
>>>>>> /etc/ntp.conf
>>>>> In the RHEL case, this would find exactly the wrong copy of ntp.conf,
>>>>> being the one we were changing to no avail, not the one that NTP was in
>>>>> fact using.
>>>>>> [peterc at tantalus ~]$ strace -f -o x /usr/sbin/ntpd -g
>>>>> I'll have to look into this.  It sounds like it might be general enough.
>>>>>> [root at tantalus ~]# grep ntp.conf x
>>>>>> 3351  open("/etc/ntp.conf", O_RDONLY)   = 4
>>>>> Doesn't this assume that the correct "ntp.conf" file is called ntp.conf?
>>>>> It may be common, the standard convention, but it is not required.
>>>>> The whole point is to find the correct file without making assumptions,
>>>>> because on a strange computer strange things may have been done.
>>>> I fully agree.
>>>> Ntpd generates a bunch of messages about what it has found in the config
>>>> file, at least in debug mode.
>>>> Maybe you should open an enhancement request on http://bugs.ntp.org to make
>>>> ntpd also print the name of the config file it is using, maybe only in
>>>> debug mode.
>>> I'm surprised that it doesn't already print the full filename of every 
>>> file it uses.
>>> Will debug mode do much if the binary wasn't compiled for debug?  I'm 
>>> trying to use the provided binary, whatever it might be, and recompiling 
>>> is usually far too much trouble to be practical.  Especially as the 
>>> effort is per platform type, and we have multiple types.
>>> I will file an enhancement request.  However, my feeling is that this 
>>> function would be most useful if added to ntpq, and yielded the full 
>>> filename including directories, as there may be multiple "ntp.conf" 
>>> files scattered about.  The key is to get NTP to tell us which file NTP 
>>> is using, without interference from our firmly held but sadly mistaken 
>>> assumptions about what NTP ought to be doing.
>>> Joe Gwinn
>> Since the source to NTPD is available, it's a SMOP to modify it to print 
>> out the desired file specification!
> True enough, but far too much work.

True enough but then why would you expect someone else to do it for you?

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