Syncing time on Citrix 5.5 VMWare

Hi experts,

Please can someone point me in the right direction? I have noticed that sometimes when logging on Citrix, the time can vary by a few minutes for different users.

Is this set on an ESXi host or just group policy?

However it is achieved, please could you provide a detailed description of how I would resolve this?

DC: Win Svr 2008 R2 Std
VMWare version 5.5
ESXi 5.5 build 2456374

Thanks everyone
Nathan LindleyIT Support EngineerAsked:
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
We would recommend

1. Set ESXi Host time to an external time source.

2. Set PDC emulator (Domain Controller) time to the same external time source as in 1. above.

3. Disable (it usually is by default) VM sync to host!

4. Workstations and Servers should sync to Domain Time.

5. Set any Linux workstatons or servers to external time source as in 1. above.
Cc
So what is time on your DC, and is it set to external time source, and is it the same time as your DC
Nathan LindleyIT Support EngineerAuthor Commented:
Thanks Andrew,

I'll check these tomorrow, I'm not 100% on where to actually change the time on the ESXi hosts, but guess this is under 'configuration' on the ESXi's in vSphere Client? I will check this all over tomorrow and keep you updated on my findings.

Thanks
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Configuration > Date and Time. (but that is only to get ESXi time correct).

if hosts do not sybc with host, this is not relevant and VM sync to host is not recommeded.
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Nathan LindleyIT Support EngineerAuthor Commented:
So does ESXi time not affect the servers running on that particular ESXi host?

My only option is to get the domain controller to look at an external time source???

Do I not need to set a policy to make all Citrix sessions look at the domain controller as a 'time server' ?

Sorry, obviously as you can see, this is new to me.

Thanks
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
It does if your VMware Tools options are set to sync time with host.

The Citrix Server should sync time with the PDC/DC automatically. (no need for policy).

and then all Citrix sessions will have the Citrix sercer time.

is the time different between Citrix server and Domain Controller
Nathan LindleyIT Support EngineerAuthor Commented:
Andrew,

I will confirm this tomorrow morning and update you.

Thanks for all that information.

Nathan
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
no probs.
Nathan LindleyIT Support EngineerAuthor Commented:
Here are some screen shots attached of the ESXi time settings shown in Capture3 - what impact would it have during the day to restart that 'Restart NTP services' tick box have. I am just being very cautious, Our Domain Controller IP Address is already in there, but the ESXi time is not the same as the DC.

Any ideas?

Thanks
Capture.PNG
Capture2.PNG
Capture3.PNG
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Here are some screen shots attached of the ESXi time settings shown in Capture3 - what impact would it have during the day to restart that 'Restart NTP services' tick box have.

No impact on the virtual machines.

Our Domain Controller IP Address is already in there, but the ESXi time is not the same as the DC.

Maybe your DC is not configured as an NTP Time Server. maybe try one of these here, if your ESXi servers have access to the internet.

http://www.pool.ntp.org/en/
Nathan LindleyIT Support EngineerAuthor Commented:
Andrew,

I am about to paste this into CMD on the domain controller, could you eye over this and make sure I've got the syntax correct, and there wont be any issues with this?

w32tm /config /manualpeerlist:uk.pool.ntp.org /syncfromflags:manual /reliable:yes /update

will this work to enable the Domain controller as an NTP server looking at an external time source (uk.pool.ntp.org)

thanks
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:

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Nathan LindleyIT Support EngineerAuthor Commented:
excellent communication, quick responses. Great expert
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