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Domain controllers have different times

Posted on 2012-04-13
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Last Modified: 2012-04-18
I have three locations and all the DC's have the exact same setting for time.  NtpServer, 0.pool.ntp.org.
One of them is off by 4 minutes.  I even deleted the registry entry and reentered it then rebooted.  
What could be wrong?
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Question by:J.R. Sitman
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LVL 17

Expert Comment

by:bigeven2002
ID: 37842801
Hello,

For the one that is off by 4 minutes, can you check it's time in the BIOS?  Sometimes the BIOS and Windows try to override each other on time settings.
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Author Comment

by:J.R. Sitman
ID: 37842810
Unfortunately I'm not at the location today.
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Accepted Solution

by:
RK earned 200 total points
ID: 37842913
Hi,

Copy the following command as batch file and run this to the affected server.

w32tm /configure /manualpeerlist:"0.pool.ntp.org
1.pool.ntp.org 2.pool.ntp.org",0x8 /syncfromflags:MANUAL
w32tm /config /update net stop w32time net start
w32time w32tm /resync /nowait

net stop w32time
w32tm /unregister
w32tm /register
net start w32time
w32tm /resync /rediscover

This sould contact the time sever and work as expected.
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Expert Comment

by:dave_it
ID: 37842930
How are you checking the time setting for each DC?  I have found the registry keys to be unreliable - On one of my local DCs, the value from HKLM/System/CurrentControlSet/Services/W32Time/Parameters/NtpServer shows - time.windows.com,0x9 - as the time source.  But from a command prompt on a DC, I use:  w32tm /monitor (This will show me the time source and current off-set for each DC in the domain).  I get the time source of this DC to be the PDC Emulator for the domain, which then gets its time from the PDC Emulator in the forest root.
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Author Comment

by:J.R. Sitman
ID: 37843012
Attached is what I got after running w32tm/ monitor.  If I reading it correctly, the PDC is getting it's time from my other DC spcala185.  Is that correct?
w32.png
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Assisted Solution

by:dave_it
dave_it earned 100 total points
ID: 37843072
Thanks for posting that screenshot.

The LA144 DC is getting time from itself, according to the screenshot (look for 'Stratum: 1' - that's the root time source).  I'd recommend running the command from the post ID: 37842913 to set that DC's time source to the one you want.
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LVL 59

Expert Comment

by:Darius Ghassem
ID: 37843115
Please read over this to understand how time works in a AD environment.

http://tigermatt.wordpress.com/2009/08/01/windows-time-for-active-directory/

If you are having issues with a DC that doesn't hold PDC emulator role then http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc758905(v=ws.10).aspx
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Author Comment

by:J.R. Sitman
ID: 37843142
I ran the command but there was one error.  See attached
w32error.png
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LVL 59

Expert Comment

by:Darius Ghassem
ID: 37843196
What OS are you running?

Are these Virtual machines?
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Author Comment

by:J.R. Sitman
ID: 37843208
2008 r2, not virtual
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LVL 6

Expert Comment

by:dave_it
ID: 37843265
Is the account being used have Domain Admins (or higher) rights?
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Author Comment

by:J.R. Sitman
ID: 37843825
yep.  I always log in as Administrator
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Author Closing Comment

by:J.R. Sitman
ID: 37863781
thanks to all for helping
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