AP Controller - NTP Server Setting

I have been having issues for as long as I can remember with my Peplink gear (Balance One Core, Balance 30, AP AC Minis, AP One AXs) with time synchronization. All devices seem to fail on the first try and then succeed 5 minutes later.

My plan was to set my primary router (Balance One Core) to use the google time servers (time.google.com). I set it in the System->Time configuration area of the UI.

To my surprise, this cause a config sync with all of my APs. The Balance One Core pushed out time.google.com as the NTP source for all of the APs. This was unexpected as I was planning on pointing all other Peplink gear at my primary router to get their time.

Why was this setting pushed out to all of my APs? It is not configured anywhere in the AP section of the router. If I manually set the NTP servers on each of the APs - will the next config sync overwrite it? I guess I will find out…

Are there any plans to implement a NTP Proxy function (similar to the DNS proxy and “Forward Outgoing DNS requests to the local DNS proxy”)?

My goal is to have one device sync with a source from the internet, and then have all of my other clients update the time from that device (keeping all NTP traffic local). As far as I can tell, none of my DHCP clients are honoring the Option 42 setting in my DHCP config.

This is expected. AP Controller will ensure the managed AP follows its NTP setting.

We do support NTP server since 8.1.0. Please refer here.

Thanks @TK_Liew , but maybe I didn’t ask the question properly. I am aware that the router can be an NTP server (even though none of my clients are honoring the DHCP option to use it). My question was whether Peplink has discussed “forcing” NTP requests to the installed NTP server. It is similar to the way you are intercepting DNS requests and forcing them through the local DNS proxy. This would be a way to “force” all LAN clients to use the controller as its time source.

I understand that the APs and the AP Controller should all have the same time. What is a bit odd is that there is no mention of the NTP server setting will do anything to the APs. The setting is in the System menu and not the AP menus.

The way it was implemented doesn’t make much sense to me. It seems to me that IF the router is configured to be an NTP server and AP Controller, why doesn’t it push it’s own address to the APs? Wouldn’t that result in the APs and the AP Controller being in sync (time wise)? I thought the point of having a local NTP server would be to keep NTP traffic local as it is probably more reliable than an internet source.

Again, my goal is to have the Balance One be the “source of truth” for all NTP requests from all of my Peplink gear. I ended up making my Balance 30 be the NTP server and pointing everything to it. Since the B30 is not the AP Controller - it doesn’t force a settings sync on the APs. Now, I point the Balance One at the Balance 30 for NTP. And in turn, the B1 forces the NTP setting down to the AP. So, now the B1 and 5 APs are all configured to use the B30 as the NTP server.

When I set the B1 to use time.google.com, I could see in the Event Logs on each device that the time sync was successful and the source was time.google.com. OK, so since I changed it to the IP of the B30, I was expecting to see events in the device Event Logs that indicated “Time Sync Successful (IP of B30)”. But instead, it looks like the APs are using the AP Controller as the source - which is the B1 (what I was wanting to do originally).

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This might accomplish your goal… Advanced → Custom Service Forwarding.

Very Clever! I haven’t looked at the Service Forwarding stuff in quite a while – they have added UDP as an option since the last I looked. Thanks for the idea!