Why is my Windows 2008 R2 DC time wrong?

Posted on 2011-10-25
Last Modified: 2012-05-12
I have a Windows 2008 R2 DC -- which runs as a VMware virtual machine.  I have it configured to an external time source, and the ESX Host/VM sync turned off.  It was brought to my attention yesterday that the domain time was 5 minutes ahead.  I can't figure out why? My configuation is below.  I typed w32tm /resync - and it corrected the time to accurate and has overnight updated everything.  I noted in the Event log that it has been 10 days since it synced, and that it sometimes syncs less frequently than than.  What governs how often it syncs -  and also is the VMTool time sync checkbox  - the only place that time sync between VMWARE Host/VM needs to be turned off?
C Emmons

C:\Windows\system32>w32tm /query /configuration

EventLogFlags: 2 (Local)
AnnounceFlags: 5 (Local)
TimeJumpAuditOffset: 28800 (Local)
MinPollInterval: 6 (Local)
MaxPollInterval: 10 (Local)
MaxNegPhaseCorrection: 172800 (Local)
MaxPosPhaseCorrection: 172800 (Local)
MaxAllowedPhaseOffset: 300 (Local)

FrequencyCorrectRate: 4 (Local)
PollAdjustFactor: 5 (Local)
LargePhaseOffset: 50000000 (Local)
SpikeWatchPeriod: 900 (Local)
LocalClockDispersion: 10 (Local)
HoldPeriod: 5 (Local)
PhaseCorrectRate: 7 (Local)
UpdateInterval: 100 (Local)


NtpClient (Local)
DllName: C:\Windows\system32\w32time.dll (Local)
Enabled: 1 (Local)
InputProvider: 1 (Local)
AllowNonstandardModeCombinations: 1 (Local)
ResolvePeerBackoffMinutes: 15 (Local)
ResolvePeerBackoffMaxTimes: 7 (Local)
CompatibilityFlags: 2147483648 (Local)
EventLogFlags: 1 (Local)
LargeSampleSkew: 3 (Local)
SpecialPollInterval: 3600 (Local)
Type: NTP (Local)
NtpServer:,, (Local)

NtpServer (Local)
DllName: C:\Windows\system32\w32time.dll (Local)
Enabled: 1 (Local)
InputProvider: 0 (Local)
AllowNonstandardModeCombinations: 1 (Local)

VMICTimeProvider (Local)
DllName: C:\Windows\System32\vmictimeprovider.dll (Local)
Enabled: 1 (Local)
InputProvider: 1 (Local)
Question by:apsutechteam
    LVL 116

    Expert Comment

    by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE)
    and also is the VMTool time sync checkbox  - the only place that time sync between VMWARE Host/VM needs to be turned off?

    Yes, this is correct, this is the only place, that VMware Tools will sync the time with the host, you can also check in the VM's *.vmx file on the datastore.
    LVL 116

    Expert Comment

    by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE)
    What time source are you using, and have you checked it's accurate and reachable?
    LVL 59

    Expert Comment

    by:Darius Ghassem
    Read over this could be a known issue

    Author Comment

    NtpServer:,, (Local) - these are my External servers.  I see in the Event Log successful syncs -- just not very often - 10-14 days apart.  Also, typing w32tm /resync -- synced the time accurately - shouldn't sync occur more often?  How do I change than?  Also, reading the VM related article - I don't see my problem -- I forget to say I'm running ESX 4.1.  If I have Host/VM time sync turned off - shouldn't virtual time drift not matter?
    LVL 116

    Accepted Solution

    Checkout this article

    Timekeeping in VMware Virtual Machines

    Author Comment

    Article says VMware Tools daemon corrects the guest operating system clock after certain events occur (suspension, snapshots,etc), even if periodic time synchronization is turned off. We had our hosts down recently for new SAN install and new fiber switch install.  I think perhaps VMs synced against hosts -- even though sync is OFF. But if that explains how the time got wrong -- why didn't PDC sync is back -- it last ran on 10/14 -- is that normal. Wouldn't I want it to run more often, and how/where do I set that?
    LVL 116

    Expert Comment

    by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE)
    do you have any other time sync events in the event logs?

    Author Comment

    Yes. 10/14/2011, 10/1/2011, 9/15/2011,8/11/2011,7/13/2011,6/29/2011,6/15/2011,5/11/2011 ...
    Of this message:

    Log Name:      System
    Source:        Microsoft-Windows-Time-Service
    Date:          8/11/2011 3:25:36 AM
    Event ID:      35
    Task Category: None
    Level:         Information
    User:          LOCAL SERVICE
    The time service is now synchronizing the system time with the time source,, (ntp.m|0x1|>

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