ntpdc -- special NTP query program
ntpdc [-ilnps] [-c command] [host ...]
The ntpdc utility is used to query the ntpd(8) daemon about its current state and to request changes in that state. The program may be run either in interactive mode or controlled using command line arguments. Extensive state and statistics information is available through the ntpdc interface. In addition, nearly all the configuration options which can be specified at startup using ntpd's configuration file may also be spec- ified at run time using ntpdc. The following options are available: -c command The following argument is interpreted as an interactive format command and is added to the list of commands to be executed on the specified host(s). Multiple -c options may be given. -i Force ntpdc to operate in interactive mode. Prompts will be written to the standard output and commands read from the stan- dard input. -l Obtain a list of peers which are known to the server(s). This switch is equivalent to `-c listpeers'. -n Output all host addresses in dotted-quad numeric format rather than converting to the canonical host names. -p Print a list of the peers known to the server as well as a sum- mary of their state. This is equivalent to `-c peers'. -s Print a list of the peers known to the server as well as a sum- mary of their state, but in a slightly different format than the -p switch. This is equivalent to `-c dmpeers'. If one or more request options are included on the command line when ntpdc is executed, each of the requests will be sent to the NTP servers running on each of the hosts given as command line arguments, or on localhost by default. If no request options are given, ntpdc will attempt to read commands from the standard input and execute these on the NTP server running on the first host given on the command line, again defaulting to localhost when no other host is specified. The ntpdc util- ity will prompt for commands if the standard input is a terminal device. The ntpdc utility uses NTP mode 7 packets to communicate with the NTP server, and hence can be used to query any compatible server on the net- work which permits it. Note that since NTP is a UDP protocol this commu- nication will be somewhat unreliable, especially over large distances in terms of network topology. The ntpdc utility makes no attempt to retransmit requests, and will time requests out if the remote host is not heard from within a suitable timeout time. The operation of ntpdc are specific to the particular implementation of Interactive Commands Interactive format commands consist of a keyword followed by zero to four arguments. Only enough characters of the full keyword to uniquely iden- tify the command need be typed. The output of a command is normally sent to the standard output, but optionally the output of individual commands may be sent to a file by appending a `>', followed by a file name, to the command line. A number of interactive format commands are executed entirely within the ntpdc utility itself and do not result in NTP mode 7 requests being sent to a server. These are described following. ? command_keyword help command_keyword A ? will print a list of all the command keywords known to this incarnation of ntpdc. A ? followed by a command keyword will print function and usage information about the command. This command is probably a better source of information about ntpq(8) than this manual page. delay milliseconds Specify a time interval to be added to timestamps included in requests which require authentication. This is used to enable (unreliable) server reconfiguration over long delay network paths or between machines whose clocks are unsynchronized. Actually the server does not now require timestamps in authenticated requests, so this command may be obsolete. host hostname Set the host to which future queries will be sent. Hostname may be either a host name or a numeric address. hostnames [yes | no] If yes is specified, host names are printed in information dis- plays. If no is specified, numeric addresses are printed instead. The default is yes, unless modified using the command line -n switch. keyid keyid This command allows the specification of a key number to be used to authenticate configuration requests. This must correspond to a key number the server has been configured to use for this pur- pose. quit Exit ntpdc. passwd This command prompts you to type in a password (which will not be echoed) which will be used to authenticate configuration requests. The password must correspond to the key configured for use by the NTP server for this purpose if such requests are to be successful. timeout milliseconds Specify a timeout period for responses to server queries. The default is about 8000 milliseconds. Note that since ntpdc retries each query once after a timeout, the total waiting time Obtains and prints a brief list of the peers for which the server is maintaining state. These should include all configured peer associations as well as those peers whose stratum is such that they are considered by the server to be possible future syn- chonization candidates. peers Obtains a list of peers for which the server is maintaining state, along with a summary of that state. Summary information includes the address of the remote peer, the local interface address (0.0.0.0 if a local address has yet to be determined), the stratum of the remote peer (a stratum of 16 indicates the remote peer is unsynchronized), the polling interval, in seconds, the reachability register, in octal, and the current estimated delay, offset and dispersion of the peer, all in seconds. The character in the left margin indicates the mode this peer entry is operating in. A `+' denotes symmetric active, a `-' indicates symmetric passive, a `=' means the remote server is being polled in client mode, a `^' indicates that the server is broadcasting to this address, a `~' denotes that the remote peer is sending broadcasts and a `*' marks the peer the server is cur- rently synchronizing to. The contents of the host field may be one of four forms. It may be a host name, an IP address, a reference clock implementation name with its parameter or REFCLK(implementation_number, parameter). On hostnames no only IP-addresses will be displayed. dmpeers A slightly different peer summary list. Identical to the output of the peers command, except for the character in the leftmost column. Characters only appear beside peers which were included in the final stage of the clock selection algorithm. A `.' indi- cates that this peer was cast off in the falseticker detection, while a `+' indicates that the peer made it through. A `*' denotes the peer the server is currently synchronizing with. showpeer peer_address ... Shows a detailed display of the current peer variables for one or more peers. Most of these values are described in the NTP Ver- sion 2 specification. pstats peer_address ... Show per-peer statistic counters associated with the specified peer(s). clockinfo clock_peer_address ... Obtain and print information concerning a peer clock. The values obtained provide information on the setting of fudge factors and other clock performance information. kerninfo Obtain and print kernel phase-lock loop operating parameters. This information is available only if the kernel has been spe- cially modified for a precision timekeeping function. loopinfo [oneline | multiline] Print the values of selected loop filter variables. The loop ter. The oneline and multiline options specify the format in which this information is to be printed, with multiline as the default. sysinfo Print a variety of system state variables, i.e., state related to the local server. All except the last four lines are described in the NTP Version 3 specification, RFC-1305. The `system flags' show various system flags, some of which can be set and cleared by the enable and disable configuration com- mands, respectively. These are the auth, bclient, monitor, pll, pps and stats flags. See the ntpd(8) documentation for the mean- ing of these flags. There are two additional flags which are read only, the kernel_pll and kernel_pps. These flags indicate the synchronization status when the precision time kernel modifi- cations are in use. The `kernel_pll' indicates that the local clock is being disciplined by the kernel, while the `kernel_pps' indicates the kernel discipline is provided by the PPS signal. The `stability' is the residual frequency error remaining after the system frequency correction is applied and is intended for maintenance and debugging. In most architectures, this value will initially decrease from as high as 500 ppm to a nominal value in the range .01 to 0.1 ppm. If it remains high for some time after starting the daemon, something may be wrong with the local clock, or the value of the kernel variable kern.clockrate.tick may be incorrect. The `broadcastdelay' shows the default broadcast delay, as set by the broadcastdelay configuration command. The `authdelay' shows the default authentication delay, as set by the authdelay configuration command. sysstats Print statistics counters maintained in the protocol module. memstats Print statistics counters related to memory allocation code. iostats Print statistics counters maintained in the input-output module. timerstats Print statistics counters maintained in the timer/event queue support code. reslist Obtain and print the server's restriction list. This list is (usually) printed in sorted order and may help to understand how the restrictions are applied. monlist [version] Obtain and print traffic counts collected and maintained by the monitor facility. The version number should not normally need to be specified. by the server by not configuring a key). The key number and the corre- sponding key must also be made known to ntpdc. This can be done using the keyid and passwd commands, the latter of which will prompt at the terminal for a password to use as the encryption key. You will also be prompted automatically for both the key number and password the first time a command which would result in an authenticated request to the server is given. Authentication not only provides verification that the requester has permission to make such changes, but also gives an extra degree of protection again transmission errors. Authenticated requests always include a timestamp in the packet data, which is included in the computation of the authentication code. This timestamp is compared by the server to its receive time stamp. If they differ by more than a small amount the request is rejected. This is done for two reasons. First, it makes simple replay attacks on the server, by someone who might be able to overhear traffic on your LAN, much more dif- ficult. Second, it makes it more difficult to request configuration changes to your server from topologically remote hosts. While the recon- figuration facility will work well with a server on the local host, and may work adequately between time-synchronized hosts on the same LAN, it will work very poorly for more distant hosts. As such, if reasonable passwords are chosen, care is taken in the distribution and protection of keys and appropriate source address restrictions are applied, the run time reconfiguration facility should provide an adequate level of secu- rity. The following commands all make authenticated requests. addpeer peer_address [keyid] [version] [prefer] Add a configured peer association at the given address and oper- ating in symmetric active mode. Note that an existing associa- tion with the same peer may be deleted when this command is exe- cuted, or may simply be converted to conform to the new configu- ration, as appropriate. If the optional keyid is a nonzero inte- ger, all outgoing packets to the remote server will have an authentication field attached encrypted with this key. If the value is 0 (or not given) no authentication will be done. The version can be 1, 2 or 3 and defaults to 3. The prefer keyword indicates a preferred peer (and thus will be used primarily for clock synchronisation if possible). The preferred peer also determines the validity of the PPS signal - if the preferred peer is suitable for synchronisation so is the PPS signal. addserver peer_address [keyid] [version] [prefer] Identical to the addpeer command, except that the operating mode is client. broadcast peer_address [keyid] [version] [prefer] Identical to the addpeer command, except that the operating mode is broadcast. In this case a valid key identifier and key are required. The peer_address parameter can be the broadcast address of the local network or a multicast group address assigned to NTP. If a multicast address, a multicast-capable kernel is required. unconfig peer_address ... This command causes the configured bit to be removed from the specified peer(s). In many cases this will cause the peer asso- enable flag ... disable flag ... These commands operate in the same way as the enable and disable configuration file commands of ntpd(8). Following is a descrip- tion of the flags. Note that only the auth, bclient, monitor, pll, pps and stats flags can be set by ntpdc; the pll_kernel and pps_kernel flags are read-only. auth Enables the server to synchronize with unconfigured peers only if the peer has been correctly authenticated using a trusted key and key identifier. The default for this flag is enable. bclient Enables the server to listen for a message from a broad- cast or multicast server, as in the multicastclient com- mand with default address. The default for this flag is disable. monitor Enables the monitoring facility. See the monlist command for further information. The default for this flag is enable. pll Enables the server to adjust its local clock by means of NTP. If disabled, the local clock free-runs at its intrinsic time and frequency offset. This flag is useful in case the local clock is controlled by some other device or protocol and NTP is used only to provide syn- chronization to other clients. In this case, the local clock driver is used. See the "Reference Clock Drivers" page (available as part of the HTML documentation pro- vided in /usr/share/doc/ntp) page for further informa- tion. The default for this flag is enable. pps Enables the pulse-per-second (PPS) signal when frequency and time is disciplined by the precision time kernel mod- ifications. See the "A Kernel Model for Precision Timekeeping" page for further information. The default for this flag is disable. stats Enables the statistics facility. See the Monitoring Options section of the ntp.conf(5) page for further information. The default for this flag is enable. pll_kernel When the precision time kernel modifications are installed, this indicates the kernel controls the clock discipline; otherwise, the daemon controls the clock dis- cipline. pps_kernel When the precision time kernel modifications are installed and a pulse-per-second (PPS) signal is avail- able, this indicates the PPS signal controls the clock discipline; otherwise, the daemon or kernel controls the clock discipline, as indicated by the pll_kernel flag. delrestrict address mask [ntpport] Delete the matching entry from the restrict list. readkeys Causes the current set of authentication keys to be purged and a new set to be obtained by rereading the keys file (which must have been specified in the ntpd(8) configuration file). This allows encryption keys to be changed without restarting the server. trustedkey keyid ... untrustedkey keyid ... These commands operate in the same way as the trustedkey and untrustedkey configuration file commands of ntpd(8). authinfo Returns information concerning the authentication module, includ- ing known keys and counts of encryptions and decryptions which have been done. traps Display the traps set in the server. See the source listing for further information. addtrap address [port] [interface] Set a trap for asynchronous messages. See the source listing for further information. clrtrap address [port] [interface] Clear a trap for asynchronous messages. See the source listing for further information. reset Clear the statistics counters in various modules of the server. See the source listing for further information.
ntp.conf(5), ntpd(8) David L. Mills, Network Time Protocol (Version 3), RFC1305.
The ntpdc utility is a crude hack. Much of the information it shows is deadly boring and could only be loved by its implementer. The program was designed so that new (and temporary) features were easy to hack in, at great expense to the program's ease of use. Despite this, the program is occasionally useful. FreeBSD 5.4 January 7, 2000 FreeBSD 5.4
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