ntpd struggling to keep up - how to fix?

Torfinn Ingolfsen torfinn.ingolfsen at broadpark.no
Fri Feb 12 12:29:54 UTC 2010

On Thu, 11 Feb 2010 11:25:15 -0800
Jeremy Chadwick <freebsd at jdc.parodius.com> wrote:

> Your machine has a rapidly drifting clock, usually an indicator of a
> hardware problem (crystal gone bad is a common one -- seen this at work
> quite a few times), or possibly a bad time counter source chosen by the
> kernel.  Can you please provide the output of:
> sysctl kern.timecounter

Here it is:
root at kg-f2# sysctl kern.timecounter
kern.timecounter.tick: 1
kern.timecounter.choice: TSC(-100) HPET(900) ACPI-safe(850) i8254(0) dummy(-1000000)
kern.timecounter.hardware: HPET
kern.timecounter.stepwarnings: 0
kern.timecounter.tc.i8254.mask: 65535
kern.timecounter.tc.i8254.counter: 52444
kern.timecounter.tc.i8254.frequency: 1193182
kern.timecounter.tc.i8254.quality: 0
kern.timecounter.tc.ACPI-safe.mask: 4294967295
kern.timecounter.tc.ACPI-safe.counter: 3252982815
kern.timecounter.tc.ACPI-safe.frequency: 3579545
kern.timecounter.tc.ACPI-safe.quality: 850
kern.timecounter.tc.HPET.mask: 4294967295
kern.timecounter.tc.HPET.counter: 3443625641
kern.timecounter.tc.HPET.frequency: 14318180
kern.timecounter.tc.HPET.quality: 900
kern.timecounter.tc.TSC.mask: 4294967295
kern.timecounter.tc.TSC.counter: 1276479615
kern.timecounter.tc.TSC.frequency: 2819782573
kern.timecounter.tc.TSC.quality: -100
kern.timecounter.smp_tsc: 0
kern.timecounter.invariant_tsc: 1

> Finally, was this OS installation used on different hardware in the
> past?  Meaning: was the hard disk previously installed on another
> machine?

Nope. Brand new hw, hard drive, and FreeBSD 8.0-release install. Then I upgraded to 8.0-stable.

>  Why I'm asking: /var/db/ntpd.drift could be from an old
> computer (the previous hardware), and the clock drift rate would be
> different than that of your newer[1] hardware. 

No, /var/db/ntp.drift is created on this machine.

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