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problem with 2000 server

Posted on 2002-07-03
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Last Modified: 2010-04-13
I am running windows 2000 server on the file server and PDC for a small network.  Having recently taken over this job, I have been rooting for problems that have either been undiagnosed or ignored.  EventViewer is LOADED with problems most of which I can solve on my own.  However, there's one that I haven't seen before and I'm hoping some one out there has.

Error
Source = w32time
category = none
event = 62
user = n/a
description = This machine is a PDC of the domain at the root of the forest.  Configure to Sync from External time source using the net command, 'net time/setsntp:<servername>'

Obviously I could just ruch off to a promtp and blindly do what MS says.  I am hoping that some one could tell me why this happens and exactly what this error is telling me.
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Question by:1cell
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by:CFXPERT
ID: 7127849
Im not positive on this but I believe it's just letting you know that the PDC is not Time/Sync with the DOMAIN.

Then it simply gives you the command to correct the warning.

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by:1cell
ID: 7127878
right, that's what I'm figuring out.  Here's the question.  How do I:

a) Stop the PDC from trying to sync with an external time source

or

b) As I am in Arizona and we do not recognize daylight savings time, I need to find an Arizona based external time source so I don't have to worry about this twice a year.

?
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by:CFXPERT
ID: 7127930
Do the other machines on your network get their time synched from the PDC?  IF not and no other dependencies exist then you could try just stopping the w32time service and set it's startup attribute to disable so it doesn't try to re-start and give you the same warning.
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by:CFXPERT
ID: 7127932
Do the other machines on your network get their time synched from the PDC?  IF not and no other dependencies exist then you could try just stopping the w32time service and set it's startup attribute to disable so it doesn't try to re-start and give you the same warning.
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by:CFXPERT
ID: 7127944
I did find some articles regarding some REG_Key changes you can make.  There is one in there about avoidingTimeSyncWithWAN  this may work for you check it out.

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;Q223184

Hope this helps ya out.
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by:1cell
ID: 7127948
I believe the other machines do login and sync with the PDC.  To be totally honest, I took over this network two days ago and I haven't had time to understand every detail of the network.  It's possible that I'm wrong.

If I stop this service, which is what I was thinking in the first place, what do I need to do to the clients to ensure that they are not trying to sync the time.
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Accepted Solution

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jmiller47 earned 100 total points
ID: 7128012
Actaully, all this means is that a Domain controller must be synched with a Stratum 1 time source. The error simply states that you must (which makes sense...) and then how to do it. All you need to do is go to a command prompt and type the following once:
NET TIME /SETSNTP:NTP.DEMON.NL

This synchronizes the DC with the Stratum 1 time server NTP.DEMON.NL. This is the time server that i synchronize my Domains with. It seems to be the most reliable in my tests and is on the list of the national Stratum time servers. If you wish to use another, feel free to use any one that you want. I suggest doing this right away. Synchronizing time on Domain Controllers is CRUCIAL for proper replication and DC tasks!

To Synchronize the clients with the Domain controller use the following line in a logon script if your Domain name is DOMAINNAME:
NET TIME /DOMAIN:DOMAINNAME /SET /YES
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by:CFXPERT
ID: 7128016
Hmm.  Not positive.  The clients may just check to see if the w32Time service exists on the PDC and if not set there own time based on user input.  It most likely wouldn't hurt anything to try stopping the service and see what happens.  Then check a client system's time to see what happens.  Sounds like this is going to be a trial an error type of thing.
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by:jmiller47
ID: 7128027
Just as it says, this server is a PDC of a Domain at the root of a Forest. These Servers MUST be synchronized with an outside Stratum source to make sure that timed task are done properly. This is very crucial in replication of AD and DC tasks. Windows 2000 comes with a very reliable time service to accomplish this and you should use that as described above.
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Expert Comment

by:pjknibbs
ID: 7128043
To answer your other question: daylight savings time is irrelevant as far as time synchronisation is concerned, because all time servers world-wide serve GMT and expect the local machine to make the adjustments required to correct for the local time zone.
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by:1cell
ID: 7128111
0k, thanks for the info so far.  I have just one remaining question to close this and it relates to pjknibbs last comment.

in arizona, we do not use daylight savings time.  do i understand correctly that i do not have to worry about what time zone the Stratum(?) source is in and if they DO use daylight savings time?

Does anyone see any problem with using a distant server as recommended above?
"NET TIME /SETSNTP:NTP.DEMON.NL"

Not saying there is, I just really wanna make sure I am doing the right thing.  As was suggested, part of the problems the previous admin was released for was consistent problems with timed backups and replication inexplainables.  If this solves all of those problems, I'll give you all A's!....and then get a nap;-)
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by:jmiller47
ID: 7128382
Correct! I was going to mention that and completely forgot. Thanks for addressing that pjknibbs!

I am also in AZ time. If you adjust the PC's time zone to AZ, then the time will be and stay correct.

"If this solves all of those problems, I'll give you all A's!....and then get a nap;-) "
Admins never take naps till they take a dirt nap!!

You can also specify multiple Stratum time servers if you want. That is the time server I use...
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Author Comment

by:1cell
ID: 7128429
okay, i'll give it a shot tonight when I go in and report back.
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by:jmiller47
ID: 7128449
Please don't close this out until you are completely satified everything is OK. This is a very good knowledgebase question for others :) I hear this question all the time and it is very important.

Let us know if your system clock gets set correctly after 1-2 days and if the event errors go away.

Thanks
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by:1cell
ID: 7128941
i figure I can make the necessary changes and then manually run the service a few times.  As long as everything kept updating OK, the only other question would be the reliability of the NTP I connect to right?
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Author Comment

by:1cell
ID: 7129036
changes made, completed successfully, service restarted five times with no events whatsoever.

Now, let's see if it's still that way when I come back in tomorrow.

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by:jmiller47
ID: 7129051
you can use multiple NTP sites if you want
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by:1cell
ID: 7134273
thanks. everything has been working great.  this in addition to a few MS updates and reg hacks and I haven't seen an error on the entire network in over 3 days!
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by:jmiller47
ID: 7134360
Make sure to document all the updates and reg hacks for the next server you set up :)
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