Which mode does a current Windows use by default for NTP requests?

Martin Fessler 1 Reputation point

Hello everyone,

I wonder, what kind of NTP mode does Windows use if the default value 0x1 for "NtpServer" under "HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\W32Time\Parameters" is used?

The default value on stand-alone clients and servers is time.windows.com,0x1.

Available flags:

0x1 SpecialInterval
0x2 UseAsFallbackOnly
0x4 SymmetricActive
0x8 Client

Source: https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-server/networking/windows-time-service/windows-time-service-tools-and-settings

According to an older KB (for Server 2003) the "symmetric active mode" is used by default.

By default, Windows Server 2003 domain controllers are configured as time servers and use symmetric active mode to send synchronization requests.

Source: https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/troubleshoot/windows-server/identity/time-synchronization-not-succeed-non-ntp

Is this still the case?
So are the settings 0x1 and 0x5 (0x1 + 0x4) practically identical?
For a standalone client who updates directly with an online NTP server, the setting 0x9 instead of the default 0x1 would actually be the cleaner/better setting - right?

Thanks and greetings,

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  1. Dave Patrick 351.7K Reputation points MVP

    Read on here as well.


    You likely do not need any flags.

    --please don't forget to upvote and Accept as answer if the reply is helpful--