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5 Considerations for Choosing the Right Time Server

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When selecting a time server for your organization, consider these factors to ensure you choose the most suitable one:

Accuracy and Time Source

The core purpose of a time server is to maintain precise time across your network. The source from which the server derives its time significantly influences its accuracy. GPS, NTP, and PTP are common sources. GPS offers high accuracy but requires a clear sky view, which may not be practical in all settings. NTP provides time synchronization via the internet and is more versatile but less accurate than GPS. Evaluate your specific needs and environmental constraints to choose the most suitable time source.

Security Features

Time servers should be equipped with robust security features to prevent unauthorized time alterations, which can disrupt network operations and security. Ensure the time server supports secure protocols like NTPv4 or PTP. Some have options for GNSS jamming detection (more details) and mitigation as well, to ensure the integrity of the time source.


Consider the size of your network and the number of devices that require time synchronization. Your time server should handle your current needs and be scalable to accommodate future network growth without sacrificing performance or accuracy.

Reliability and Redundancy

Consistent uptime is crucial for network operations. Look for time servers that offer redundancy, such as backup oscillators, multiple time sources, or the capability to connect multiple servers for backup. This ensures continuous accurate timekeeping, even if one source fails. Additionally, opt for servers with durable hardware features to enhance longevity and dependability.

Regulatory Compliance

Different industries have specific regulations governing time synchronization to ensure the integrity of data and transactions. Make sure the time server you choose meets these requirements, providing precise synchronization and comprehensive logging for audit and compliance purposes.

By carefully considering these aspects, you can select a time server that ensures seamless and secure timekeeping, aligning with your organization’s operational needs and regulatory standards.

Last Updated: March 21, 2024

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