I have set up an NTP server on my pfSense install and have configured a number of clients to access the server which is working great, however from what I can tell it is sending out the time as UTC time and not local time. This is the first time I have set up such a service on pfSense or set up an NTP server at all. Is there a way to have the NTP service on pfSense or on a dedicated NTP server broadcast or sync a local time. This way I only have to make sure that the server is monitoring the time changes with daylight savings and not all my client devices, as some namely my managed switches don’t let me select a proper timezone and instead want a UTC offset.
This “how to” looks very complete.
The section on configuring your time zone is the important part. Check that all your devices and the pfsense time zone are the same. It’s important to remenber that devices tend to slowly come into sync with the time server. Some devices will refuse to sync if the difference between the time server and the devices own time is too large. I have found setting the devices own clock as close to the real time as possible before configuring the upstream time server works best.
Time zone is just the name for the UTC offset from the point of view of world time. Easy lookup can be found here:
Just a through but have you restarted pfsense since you updated the time settings?
Thanks for those guides/information, I have restarted pfSense since i set its time zone, the problem is some of the clients don’t have a time zone but a UTC offset, with the face that my offset changes with the calendar for daylight savings it is a pain to have to manually adjust them each time it changes. At the moment is seems to be the switches that are the issue, of which i have six of them running.
It shouldnt matter what timezone the pfsense is set to, it would only show you the UTC timestamp on pfsense. For the clients you need to make sure the TZ is set correctly. Thats how NTP servers around the world can be utilized without having to have them in the same timezone you are in.
I was hoping there was a way to have the NTP server send out a local time vs UTC so that I would not have to adjust the switches come spring, all other devices are set to the correct timezone and should shift automatically, the switches unfortunately are not that smart. Guess it means that is another feature I will be looking for come 10G time.
With the clients I think you’ll find it’s the client changing the displayed time and not the ntp server changing it. My understanding is that all devices should have their internal clocks set to UTC. The TZ then alters the displayed time depending on the users configuration. Here is the official TZ database:
You could check the cli interface for your switches to see if there is a time zone config option.
What kind of switches are they?
5 of the switches are D-Link DGS-1100-24 and one is a DGS-1100-16
Just to close this thread off, I ended up adjusting all the devices that are using the pfSense NTP server to use the proper timezone and then set the switched to the correct manual offset. they will just need to be adjusted in the spring or be an hour off but there are only 6 switches so its not a hard process to change them twice a year for now.