How To: Configure External Time Source for Server 2008 R2

Posted by SteveHardie | On: Jul 15 2012

This article explains how to configure your Windows Server 2008 R2 Active Directory Primary Domain Controller to syncronise time with an external time source.

Note: In an active directory, all member computers will sync time with the PDC, so you only need to setup an external time source on the PDC.

Open an elevated command prompt and type the following:

Net Stop W32Time
W32tm /config /syncfromflags:manual /manualpeerlist:"<ip addresses>"
W32tm /config /reliable:yes
Net Start W32Time
W32tm /config /update
W32tm /resync

You can run W32tm /resync on member computers to sync time with the PDC.

External Time Sources

In Australia, a good reliable time source to use is 0.au.pool.ntp.org.
Check out the NTP Project for world wide time sources.


  1. Pau says:

    thank you – worked great !!

  2. Khalid Ahmed says:

    Precise and to the point works like a charm.

  3. Ben Dyson says:

    For this to work you can’t have any Group Policy setup on for “Configure Windows NTP Client” or W32tm /resync can’t find a data source. If you have that issue do the following:
    Run > gpedit.msc > Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > System > Windows Time Service > Time Providers and Set “Configure Windows NTP Client” to “Not Configured”.

    Would have worked a charm for me were it not for that.

  4. Richard says:

    a thousand thanks! I’ve been banging my head against a brick wall all morning trying to update my time source, each time it reverted to the CMOS clock after doing a restart of the time service. Your process worked a treat.

  5. Ben Jones says:

    Clear, Concise and effective!
    You’re a legend!

  6. moin says:

    hi I am having problem that although the time is synced correctly across ad domain (win svr 2008), but the format suddenly reverted to mm/dd/yyyy from dd/mm/yyyy, which when i change on dc, reverts back.

    kindly help!.

  7. Mervin says:

    Worked for me, thanks!

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