[time-nuts] Selecting server hardware (newbie question)

John Ackermann N8UR jra at febo.com
Sat Jan 28 08:32:33 EST 2006

Allen Coates said the following on 01/27/2006 10:11 PM:
> I am trying to select a host machine for a dedicated NTP server.  I have 
> several spare PCs to hand, with processor speeds around 500 MHz - all my 
> budget will allow for the moment.
> Initial experiments have been with Fedora core 4 and the "standard issue" NTP 
> daemon.     I set the PCs up as a group of peers, and using ntpq -p, observed 
> each one, as seen by the others.
> Two of the machines seem to run "sweeter" than the others, but I don't know 
> how to go on, and objectively compare their performance or suitability as a 
> server.

There is evidence that FreeBSD is a better platform for NTP than Linux;
I'm not certain that evidence is conclusive, but certainly FreeBSD with
a current 4.2.x NTP distribution seems to work very well.  One advantage
of FreeBSD is that it supports kernel time discipline if you want that,
while Linux kernels 2.6.x don't (there were patches for kernel support
for 2.4.x, but they didn't carry forward).

I'm running a couple of 1U servers with Celeron 433 processors and
FreeBSD, and they seem to work very well.

Your mileage may vary...


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