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How to configure a time server in a Windows Server environment

It took a while before I figured out the right combination to sync my network users to our Active Directory

Here's a few tip for you to check before you configure your time server.

  • Make sure that you allow NTP (port 123 Network Time Protocol) in your network to go out. Here's how to test if your server can communicate to the NTP outside your network. Open a command prompt (click Start, Run, type "CMD" [Enter]). In command prompt, type w32tm /monitor / [Enter]. It will return a xx ms delay.
  • Then follow the step by step instruction from Microsoft website on how to configure the Windows Time service to use an external time source.
  • Remember to restart your Windows Time service. In command prompt, type net stop w32time && net start w32time [Enter]. This will stop and restart the service.
  • To tell a system's W32Time service to get it's time from the Active Directory. In command prompt, type w32tm /config /syncfromflags:domhier /update [Enter]. For additonal w32tm command line, type w32tm /? [Enter]
This will resolve your windows time service problem.

Additional information. If you need to see the FSMO PDC, run this command in your Active Directory server. In AD server command prompt, type netdom query fsmo [Enter] this will provide the list of your network Schema owner, Domain role owner, PDC role, RID pool manager, and Infrastructure owner.

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