[Samba] Re: Purpose of param. "time server" ?

M. Vancl mvancl at setuza.cz
Tue Mar 30 16:58:50 GMT 2004

"Raphaël RIGNIER" <admin.prepa.cpe at wanadoo.fr> wrote:

> By default, Windoze XP Pro Workstations look for the (S)NTP service on the
> PDC to synchronize with.
> If your Samba server is a PDC, then yes, you could use this option and
> configure NTP service on the Samba Box. There is nothing to do with your
> pro workstations, if tey are members of the domain.
> If your workstations are XP Home or in Workgroup mode, it is NOT
> You must configure the w32time service to syncrhonize to the IP address of
> your local NTP server (by default it's time.microsoft.com or something
> that).

> To see exactly what your Windows workstation is doing with time, you can
> w32time service in debug mode
> http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;816043

Thanks for your explanation. Its new for me and it seems to lead me to right
understanding of time sync on WinXP.

I had done some experimet:
My workstation is WinXP Pro, DC is SAMBA 3.0.2 with time server = yes,
without running ntpd on this server now.
Clock setting on XP (3rd card / Internet time - I'm not sure of right
english label of it) is by default disabled (empty checkbox). Formerly on
this wkst. was done some experiments with single ntp server in our LAN
(router Cisco).
I configured debug log of w32time and restarted computer. Entries in log are
It seems, after reboot was made 3 attempts to use strange IP address
( is unknown for me):
=> 147281 12:15:26.8281250s - NtpProvider: Created 2 sockets (1
listen-only):, (
After it, attempts to poll some ntp peers (peer list contents is not
displayed) are made and got response from my earlier tested internal ntp
server. I don't know why, because I deleted it from server list from
registry (key
HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\DateTime\Servers) before
But most important is - there are logged no attempts to sync clock with my
samba server and additionally tcpdump (port 123) on it don't caught any such
Conclusion: It seems not be true that XP Pro wkst. looks by default (or
based on option "time server") to ntp service on my SAMBA PDC. Curiously it
uses another ntp server on my LAN but I don't know why...
Probably the best but not nice solution is to stop researching how to
exploit "time server" option and explicitly set up internal ntp server in
clock settings on all WinXP workstations. It's annoying.

M. Vancl

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