Wonky NTP startup and the incremental-configuration problem

Hal Murray hmurray at megapathdsl.net
Fri Jun 10 09:33:41 UTC 2016

esr at thyrsus.com said:
>> ntpq can be used to tweak things, but it takes a password.
>> I've never used it that way.
> And if *you* haven't...I begin to wonder if 99% of the userbase even knows
> this feature exists.

> I'm sorely tempted to just rip everything password-protected out of ntpq and
> server side both, muttering "security" if we get any pushback.

There is a command line switch to write stuff out.  There is a script that 
uses it to check the parser.  We could probably find some other way to do 

> Hal: Do you think we'd get any pushback? 

Not from me, but there might be a few people out there who use it.

Anybody on this list use it?

esr at thyrsus.com said:
> I'm not arguing either point, but it would help me to know *why* you're sure
> it won't help with system crashes.  If my mental model isn't wildly off it
> ought to help with any outage sufficiently short for propagation delays from
> up-stratum server to remain similar. 

If the system crashes you don't get a chance to save state.  Maybe I missed 
your original idea:
> How it should work is that there is just one way to hack your
> configuration, modifying ntp.conf, and restarting the daemon to
> reread it is a low-cost operation that produces only transient
> synchronization glitches.
How does that help crash recovery?

esr at thyrsus.com said:
> I'd like to know that too.  If the non-g mode isn't wandering all over the
> park that is valuable information for characterizing the bug. 

I'll be surprised if non -g works any better.  It's role is to allow one big 
jump in case the battery in your RTC has failed or things like that.

esr at thyrsus.com said:
> It seems to me that both burst and iburst are in serious need of being
> better documented.  Would you do something about thst, please? 

The existing documentation is much better than I could write.  Have you 
looked at it?

Start with docs/rate.txt and docs/poll.txt

You can learn a lot from the rate limiting stuff.  It's carefully tuned to 
work with iburst and burst.

These are my opinions.  I hate spam.

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