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Windows Server 2012 – Configuring NTP Servers for Time Synchronization

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This tutorial will walk an individual through the process of configuring their Windows Server 2012 domain controller to synchronize its time with a trusted, external resource.

Video Steps

1. Use Google, Bing, or other preferred search engine to locate trusted NTP time servers. These are typically provided by government or other network organizations.

2. Log onto the domain controller with administrative credentials and launch a command prompt

3. Stop the time service with the following command: net stop w32time

4. Enter the following command to configure the NTP time servers: w32tm /config /syncfromflags:manual /manualpeerlist:”time server 1, time server 2, time server 3” then hit enter. The command should complete successfully.

5. Inform the domain controller that these are trusted server with the following command: w32tm /config /reliable:yes

6. Restart the time service: net start w32time

7. Review the results by entering: w32tm /query /configuration

8. Ensure the settings are the desired ones. Then close the command prompt. The NTP servers have now been configured.

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17 Comments
 

Expert Comment

by:andrew nyc
i have some clients who when i run w32tm/query /status shot local cmos or free time.  and they are a few mins off of the rest of the computers and server. why is this?
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Author Comment

by:Rodney Barnhardt
From doing some research, it appears there are others who are experiencing sporadic machines not keeping time with the domain. There are a variety of reasons, such as they sit behind a firewall blocking UDP123 (maybe see if the Windows Firewall is on and blocking it). Here is a link on a few options, including configuring the systems similar to the DC, except pointing the system to the domain server rather then externally.

http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/windows/en-US/9533034e-3f50-4b70-a14e-ab0b15b17c0e/unable-to-sync-time-with-domain-using-windows-7?forum=w7itpronetworking
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Expert Comment

by:andrew nyc
rodney thanks, i literally tried everything on the net i can find and its just not working. I even set a GPO to sync the clocks and nothing.

is there a logon script for this and what is it?
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Expert Comment

by:andrew nyc
i tried a logon script NET TIME \\TIMESRV /SET /YES  but thats not working either,  the clients will not sync!
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Author Comment

by:Rodney Barnhardt
What is the result of the following command on one of these systems. A domain controller or something else?   w32tm /query /source
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Expert Comment

by:andrew nyc
everything says local CMOS clock even the server

i have done everything  on all the tutorials and everything people said to do but i can never seem to get it off cmos
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Author Comment

by:Rodney Barnhardt
I would verify that your firewall to the Internet isn't blocking UDP123. If the remote time server cannot be contacted, it will default to the local CMOS clock. Also, check the local GPO and verify it does not use time.windows.com: computer config\administrative templates\windows components\windows time server
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Expert Comment

by:piedthepiper
This is being saved for future reference, I am a big fan of find quick concise to the point info!
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Author Comment

by:Rodney Barnhardt
I recently ran into a problem where setting the NTP server continually pointed to the CMOS clock, similar to what  Andrew NYC mentions above. I ended up contacting Microsoft on the problem. They provided the solution, which was a simple registry edit. I have written an article located on the link below that described the problem and the resolution.

http://www.experts-exchange.com/articles/18450/Windows-Server-PDC-Emulator-Sync-Issue-with-Manually-Configured-NTP-Server.html
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Expert Comment

by:Jamie-Morse
I get the following error when I try and add more than one time source:

C:\>w32tm /config /syncfromflags:manual /manualpeerlist:"0.north-america.pool.nt
p.org, 1.north-america.pool.ntp.org, 2.north-america.pool.ntp.org, 3.north-ameri
ca.pool.ntp.org"
The following arguments were unexpected:
 1.north-america.pool.ntp.org, 2.north-america.pool.ntp.org, 3.north-america.poo
l.ntp.org

If I enter just one the command is successful.

Thanks
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Author Comment

by:Rodney Barnhardt
Are you manually typing it in, or did you type it into Word and paste it into the command line? The reason I ask is that I highlighted and copied your command and then pasted it into a text file. The file formatted like it had carriage returns and appeared just as it is show above. I then removed the carriage returns and pasted the command into one of my Windows Server 2012 R2 machines and it completed successfully.
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Expert Comment

by:CFB_Surfgoddess
I had to set up a second scheduled task in my virtual machine DC to get it to sync with the time servers.
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Author Comment

by:Rodney Barnhardt
Have you tried the settings above, including the link to the other document? I have tried to address the two most common problems around setting this up. The other issue, since it is a virtual machine, would be if it was set to time sync with the host. You did not mention your hypervisor, but with VMware, here is how you correct the problem.

http://kb.vmware.com/selfservice/microsites/search.do?language=en_US&cmd=displayKC&externalId=1189
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Expert Comment

by:No More
Good video, but you forgot one important information

This has to be done on server, which has FSMO role "PDC"
1
 
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Expert Comment

by:ankitha reddy
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Expert Comment

by:Shane Gubb
Thank you for the video clear instruction

I have found on server 2012 (non r2) I had to change the command a little
[comma] [space] between each server causes "The following arguments were unexpected"  where as just [comma] between works correctly
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Expert Comment

by:Hadoop Training
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