Archive for the ‘ntp server’ Category

What Is NTP? What Are Its Benefits? Find Out Now…

Thursday, March 13th, 2014

NTP time server specialists, Galleon, answers what is NTP? Highlighting the benefits of NTP servers for businesses.    

What Is NTP?

What Is NTP?

Galleon Systems, Provider Of NTP Time Servers

In simple terms NTP, or Network Time Protocol, is a system used to synchronise the time of day across computer networks. Originally developed by David L. Mills of the University of Delaware, NTP works by using a single time source, enabling it to synchronise time across all devices that are part of a network.

Did you know? NTP was first implemented in 1985. However, some of its predecessors date back as far as 1979.

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NTP Time Servers – Are They Affected By Daylight Savings Time?

Tuesday, March 4th, 2014
Daylight Savings, NTP Time Server

Clocks go forward on March 30, 2014.

Specialists in the design, manufacture and supply of time synchronisation units and digital clocks, Galleon Systems clears up the confusion over the impact of daylight savings time on NTP time servers. 

In March, clocks in the UK go forward one hour in preparation for British summer time, prompting concerns that daylight savings time will cause problems for users of NTP time servers. In a bid to reassure, Galleon Systems clarifies the impact of daylight savings time on NTP time servers in order to calm such concerns.

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Network Time Protocol DDoS Attacks, What’s the Solution?

Tuesday, February 25th, 2014
DDoS attacks hit network time protocol

DDoS attacks hit network time protocol.

A spate of Network Time Protocol DDoS attacks have hit the headlines recently with the BBC and PC World all reporting an increase in such incidents. Has your business suffered? Then read on…

Network time server manufacturers and suppliers, Galleon Systems, understand Network Time Protocol and provide numerous technologies capable of combatting the recent outbreak of DDoS attacks hitting Network Time Protocol. Recently, the BBC made reference to online security specialists Cloudfare, which reported the ‘biggest’ attack of its kind and warned that a key vulnerability of internet infrastructure had been exploited.  (more…)

Have the Olympics kept pace with precision timing?

Friday, August 10th, 2012

London 2012 will be the 30th modern Olympic Games, and in its 116-year history, UY98UZDDVGGJ the Olympics have gone through many changes. New events have been introduced, records have been broken and different cities have played host to the games, but one constant has remained – the need to time competitors accurately during the different events. (more…)

The Perils of Online Time Servers

Wednesday, July 18th, 2012

All sorts of technologies rely on precise and exact time, from cash machines and CCTV cameras, to speed cameras and computer networks. For computer networks, accurate time is essential for preventing errors, fraud and ensures security. Without it, many organisations, industries and modern applications couldn’t function. Everything from internet banking to air traffic control relies on precise and accurate time, but many organisations take unnecessary risks when it comes to the time on their networks and rely on online time servers. (more…)

Keeping Time with Network Time Protocol

Monday, April 30th, 2012

When it comes to network time synchronisation, Network Time Protocol (NTP) is by far the most widely used software protocol. Whether it’s for keeping a network of hundreds or thousands of machines synchronised, or keeping a single machine running true, NTP offers the solution. Without NTP, and the NTP server, many of the tasks we perform on the internet, from shopping to online banking, simply wouldn’t be possible. (more…)

The Cost of Inaccurate Network Time

Friday, April 20th, 2012

Time is essential to all of us, and losing track of time can be costly. Missing meetings, being late for work or not catching the last bus home can all be a nuisance, but all this pales in comparison to what happens when a computer network loses track of time.

Time is critical for computer systems. It is the only reference a network has for knowing when applications and processes need to be, or have been, done. Alter the network time, allow the clocks to drift or fail to synchronise everything properly and a whole host of problems can arise.

Affects of Time Failure

Firstly, if network time goes wrong, processes and applications due to take place may not happen. This is because if the time is wrong a PC may assume the application has already happened. Secondly, data can easily be lost as timestamps are used in the storing process, and if there is a problem with the time, data may just get dumped. Thirdly, when it comes to debugging a system, without accurate synchronisation it can be nearly impossible. Knowing when something went wrong is essential for any error correction.

Finally, network security is reliant on secure and accurate time. Hackers and malicious software can use any discrepancies in a system’s time to gain access to a network. It only takes a second or two of discrepancy to provide enough access to unauthorised access. And if the time source itself is attacked, the effects can be even more severe

Time Server Security

Many computer networks use online NTP time servers (Network Time Protocol). These are accessed across the internet and send a regular timestamp to which a network synchronises. The problem with these online time server systems is that if the time server is wrong, so the network will be. Also, if a time server itself gets attacked by hackers or malicious software, the effects can be catastrophic. Imagine you network suddenly thinking it’s a year in the future, or in the past, the entire network could be open to all sorts of abuse.

The accuracy of these online time servers can never be guaranteed and are affected by all sorts of things such as the distance away, and the speed of the connection, and they also require an open port in the firewall, through which they send their time signals, and this port could also be used by malicious users.

The NTP Time Server

The solution for ensuring network security is fairly simple and relatively inexpensive – the NTP time server. These dedicated devices receive the time directly from an atomic clock source such as the GPS network (Global Positioning System). This not only makes them highly secure methods of synchronising network time, but also highly accurate, often to within a few milliseconds.

The cost of an NTP server is relatively low, especially when you consider the cost of failing to have accurate and secure network time will cost you. As a single NTP server is able to synchronise a network of hundreds of machines, securely, and offers peace of mind and a cost effective and secure method of keeping your network healthy.

Independent NTP Time Servers for Time Synchronisation

Thursday, February 9th, 2012

Network time Protocol (NTP) is used as a synchronisation tool by most computer networks. NTP distributes a single time source around a network and ensures all devices are running in synchronisation with it. NTP is highly accurate and able to keep all machines on a network to within a few milliseconds of the time source. However, where this time source comes from can lead to problems in time synchronisation within a network. (more…)

Summertime Debate Re-emerges as Clocks go Forward

Monday, November 14th, 2011

As British summer time officially ended last weekend, with the clocks going back to bring the UK back to GMT (Greenwich Mean Time), the debate about the annual clock changing has started again. The Coalition Government has proposed plans to change the way Britain keeps time by shifting the clocks forward another hour, and in effect reverting to Central European Time (ECT)..

ECT, would mean that Britain would remain an hour ahead of GMT in the winter and two hours ahead in the summer, providing lighter evenings but darker mornings, especially for those north of the border.

However, any proposed plans have stiff opposition from the Scottish Government who suggest that by altering the clocks, many areas in Scotland wouldn’t see daylight during winter until about 10am, meaning many children would have to go to school in the dark.

Other opponents, include traditionalists, argue that GMT has been the basis for British time for over a century, and that any change would be simply … unBritish.
However, a change to ECT would make things easier for businesses that trade with Europe, keeping British workers on a similar timescale to their European neighbours.

Whatever the outcome of the proposed changes to GMT, little will change when it comes to technology and computer networks as they already keep the same timescale all over the globe: UTC (Coordinated Universal Time).

UTC is a global timescale kept true by an array of atomic clocks and is used by all sorts of technologies such as computer networks, CCTV cameras, bank telling machines, air traffic control systems and stock exchanges.

Based on GMT, UTC remains the same the world over, enabling global communication and the transfer of data across time zones without error. The reason for UTC is obvious when you consider the amount of trade that goes on across borders. With industries such as the stock exchange, where stocks and shares fluctuate in price continuously, split second accuracy is essential for global traders. The same is true for computer networks, as computers use time as the only reference as to when an event has taken place. Without adequate synchronisation, a computer network may lose data and international transactions would become impossible.

Most technologies keep synchronised to UTC by using NTP time servers (Network Time Protocol), which continually check system clocks across whole networks to ensure that they all are synced to UTC.

NTP time servers receive atomic clock signals, either by GPS (Global Positioning Systems) or by radio signal broadcast by national physics laboratories such as NIST in the United States or NPL in the UK. These signals provide millisecond accuracy for technologies, so no matter what time zone a computer network is, and no matter where it is in the world, it can have the same time as every other computer network across the globe that it has to communicate with.

Vote Called to End the Use of GMT and Scrapping the Leap Second

Wednesday, October 12th, 2011

International Telecommunications Union (ITU), based in Geneva, is voting in January to finally get rid of the leap second, effectively scrapping Greenwich Meantime.

 

Greenwich Mean Time may come to an end

UTC (Coordinated Universal Time) has been around since the 1970’s, and already effectively governs the world’s technologies by keeping computer networks synchronised by way of NTP time servers (Network Time Protocol), but it does have one flaw: UTC is too accurate, that is to say, UTC is governed by atomic clocks, not by the rotation of the Earth. While atomic clocks relay an accurate, unchanging form of chronology, the Earth’s rotation varies slightly from day-to-day, and in essence is slowing down by a second or two a year.

To prevent noon, when the sun is highest in the sky, from slowly getting later and later, Leap Seconds are added to UTC as a chronological fudge, ensuring that UTC matches GMT (governed by when the sun is directly above by the Greenwich Meridian Line, making it 12 noon).

The use of leap seconds is a subject of continuous debate. The ITU argue that with the development of satellite navigation systems, the internet, mobile phones and computer networks all reliant on a single, accurate form of time, a system of timekeeping needs to be precise as possible, and that leap seconds causes problems for modern technologies.

This against changing the Leap Second and in effect retaining GMT, suggest that without it, day would slowly creep into night, albeit in many thousands of years; however, the ITU suggest that large-scale changes could be made, perhaps every century or so.

If leap seconds are abandoned, it will effectively end Greenwich Meantime’s guardianship of the world’s time that has lasted over a century. Its function of signalling noon when the sun is above the meridian line started 127 years ago, when railways and telegraphs made a requirement for a standardised timescale.

If leap seconds are abolished, few of us will notice much difference, but it may make life easier for computer networks that synchronised by NTP time servers as Leap Second delivery can cause minor errors in very complicated systems. Google, for instance, recently revealed it had written a program to specifically deal with leap seconds in its data centres, effectively smearing the leap second throughout a day.