I have ntpd running on a box. I want to see how the time on the box compares to the time retrieved from ntp.ubuntu.com. Is there an easy way to do this?

  • I take it you just want to see the time there and not actually change your computer's time to match it? – DerfK Jan 10 '11 at 20:37
  • Yep, that's right. – John Bachir Jan 10 '11 at 20:50

ntpq -p ntp.ubuntu.com

From man ntpq:

-p     Print  a list of the peers known to the server as well as a summary of their state. This is equivalent to the peers interactive command.

Edit: The host is timing out right now. ntpq -p pool.ntp.org will return a valid result.

  • 2
    ntpdate is deprecated so it's best to get in habit of using ntpq instead. However I still use ntpdate all the time myself, old habits die hard. – Phil Hollenback Jan 10 '11 at 20:43
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    @Phil Hollenback : ntpdate may be "deprecated", but it works. ntpq -p often does not. Possibly because ISPs are blocking it? Or because of the server configuration? – mivk Jan 2 '16 at 23:54
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    @mivk "Possibly because ISPs are blocking it" This makes no sense. It's all the same NTP protocol. – Jonathon Reinhart Jan 13 '16 at 15:06
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    @mivk @Jonathon actually, ntpq -p is not asking for time, it's asking for a list of peers and other vars. If the server has a noquery restriction it will timeout. – GnP Apr 21 '16 at 19:10
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    ntpq -p pool.ntp.org times out from two of my machines, while there is no such problem with ntpdate -q pool.ntp.org. As said by GnP, ntpq -p does not do what the user expects. This incorrect answer should probably be removed. Moreover ntpq cannot be installed under Debian without the associated ntp daemon! – vinc17 Nov 16 '16 at 13:05

You can use ntpdate to query a time server

ntpdate -q ntp.ubuntu.com


Actually, the command ntpq -c "rv 0 clock" ntp.ubuntu.com will return the time of the server in standard format : this is the result from ca.pool.ntp.org :

clock=d1b5aa9c.b8f9697a  Wed, Jun 29 2011  9:43:56.722

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