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Configuring a Device to Operate in the NTP Client/Server Mode


In the NTP client/server mode, you configure your device to communicate directly with an NTP server.


The various NTP modes are not mutually exclusive. You may configure a device to operate in multiple modes at the same time.

To configure the device to operate in the NTP client/server mode, you need to include the following statements at the [edit system] hierarchy level

  • ntp: The NTP statement and sub-statements define the NTP interaction for this device. The source-address value will be used to identify NTP queries and responses made by the device in the system logs.

  • boot-server: When the device is initially booted, the device issues an ntpdate request to the specified NTP server. This is used to set the time and date during the boot process. Setting the date and time of the device during the boot process ensures that the device clock will be within tolerance to perform NTP synchronization. The boot server address should be an IPv4 or IPv6 address.

  • server: The server statement specifies the NTP server or servers to poll for time data.

  • authentication-key: The authentication-key statement defines the authentication key or keys used to authenticate NTP servers and clients.

  • trusted key: The trusted-key statement specifies the authentication keys that are trusted by the system.

  1. Set the authentication key or keys to use for authenticating the NTP servers. (optional)
  2. Specify the NTP server or servers to use.

    When defining the server, you have the following options available to you:

    • server (required): The IP address of the NTP server.

    • key (optional): To include an authentication to in all messages sent to the NTP server, include the key option. The authentication key corresponds to the key value that is specified in the authentication-key statement.

    • version (optional): The NTP version packet used. By default, the device sends NTP version 4 packets to the time server. To use versions 1, 2 or 3, include the version option.

    • prefer (optional): If multiple servers are defined, this option specifies the primary NTP server.

  3. Specify the NTP server to use during a boot sequence.

    When defining the NTP server to use during the boot sequence, you can either specify the IP address or the host name of the server. If you use the host name, ensure that a DNS server that can resolve this host name is directly reachable by the device.

  4. Specify the NTP server to list on log entries. (optional)
  5. Specify which authentication key or keys are to be trusted by the device. (optional)

    The authentication key value is defined in the authentication-key statement.

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