Time Setting

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ClockWatch Enterprise  
Automatic Time Setting Capabilities

ClockWatch Enterprise allows you to keep an entire network in Sync by monitoring and maintaining computers on the LAN at the correct time. From the Enterprise control console you can tell at a glance how the clients on the network are performing. What follows is a brief discussion on how time monitoring is done across a network using ClockWatch Enterprise.


Central Timeserver & Controller

  • ClockWatch Pro maintains the standard time on the timeserver

Since it is not practical for each machine to have direct access to a precise source such as a cesium clock or GPS clock, ClockWatch machines rely instead on trusted sources to provide the time. A trusted source is another computer that has obtained the time in a reliable fashion and is willing to share that information.  Some protocols, such as NIST & NTP, include a flag in the server's response to indicate whether or not the server's clock is synchronized. In addition to these safety checks, ClockWatch Enterprise also insists that the received time be "reasonable" -- that is, that it falls within the range of acceptable dates based on a number of specific criteria.

  • Timeserver polls and maintains clients' clocks over the LAN

ClockWatch Enterprise also maintains contact with each computer on the network, insuring that it is up, available and in sync.

Optimized for Business Networks

  • It corrects for delays in network traffic
  • It compensates for the various time resolution limitations inherent in the operating system, achieving the maximum available accuracy for each system.

UTC and Local Time zones

  • ClockWatch can handle clients with different time settings needs or different time zones

The point of clock synchronization is for each machine to discover the standard time and make sure its clock matches. Local time is derived from standard time independently by each machine, by applying time zone and daylight savings corrections specified on that machine. Local time is meaningful only to that particular machine (or others that happen to share its exact assumptions about time zones and daylight savings time), so is never used when communicating time among machines. Regardless of the protocol used between machines, ClockWatch Enterprise always uses UTC to communicate the time. This allows ClockWatch Enterprise to operate with machines in any time zone, regardless of local daylight savings time.

Accuracy Issues

In addition to the above considerations, the physical nature and software limitations of computer clocks and network communications introduce cumulative errors into the process of sending and receiving the correct time. It is vital that these factors be identified and compensated for on every machine involved in the time chain to achieve a reliable approximation of the "true time" on any system.

ClockWatch Enterprise addresses these issues in multiple ways:

  • It uses sophisticated clock adjustment algorithms to increase the effective accuracy of each computer clock
  • It allows you to identify machines with excessive time loss problems, perhaps indicating an overloaded or under powered system.

In summary, ClockWatch Enterprise provides a comprehensive solution for time syncing a Windows network.

Email Notification

ClockWatch Enterprise can notify you via email when the clients’s clock is overdue for a time check. Notification alerts you or an affiliate to a potential problem via email when the clock has not been checked for a period of time.

Test Screen lets you verify email can be sent

Note that:
  • The warning message from ClockWatch includes the computer’s name and IP address, the time and date the warning was generated, and the amount of time elapsed since the last successful clock check.
  • The SMTP server used must allow sending mail without logging in or first checking incoming mail. ClockWatch uses the default port (25) to send mail.




For more information

ClockWatch Enterprise Home Page

Network Time Synchronization

Remote Startup and Shutdown

Client Service Module

Network Monitoring

Advanced Features

Introductory Video

Product Guide

User's Guide



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Copyright 2007 Beagle Software. All rights reserved
Last reviewed March 19, 2008