Preset values for the Windows Time service Group Policy settings are different from the corresponding Windows Time service registry entries in Windows Server 2003

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Article ID: 902229 - View products that this article applies to.
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Symptoms

On a Microsoft Windows Server 2003-based computer, you notice that the preset values for the Windows Time service Group Policy settings are different from the corresponding Windows Time service registry entries.

Specifically, the preset Group Policy settings are more restrictive than the corresponding default registry entries. These more restrictive settings may trigger event logging instead of the expected time synchronization with the server.

Notes
  • The registry entries for the Windows Time service are found under the following registry subkey:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\W32Time
  • Certain Group Policy settings have the same names as the registry entries for the Windows Time service. For example, the LargePhaseOffset and SpikeWatchPeriod Group Policy settings appear in the following location in the Group Policy Object Editor:
    Computer Configuration\Administrative Templates\System\Windows Time Service
    However, the policy updates the following location in the system registry:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\POLICIES\MICROSOFT\W32Time
    The LargePhaseOffset and SpikeWatchPeriod registry entries appear under both the following registry subkeys:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\W32Time\Config

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\POLICIES\MICROSOFT\W32Time\Config
    However only the values of the following registry subkey are applied:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\POLICIES\MICROSOFT\W32Time\Config

Cause

This issue occurs because some of the preset values that are configured in the System Administrative template file (System.adm) for the Group Policy object (GPO) settings are different from the corresponding default registry entries.

Workaround

To work around this issue, use the Group Policy Object Editor to change the value for the LargePhaseOffset Group Policy setting. To do this, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start, click Run, type gpedit.msc, and then click OK.
  2. In the Group Policy Object Editor, expand Computer Configuration, expand Administrative Templates, expand System, and then click Windows Time Service.
  3. On the right pane, double-click Global Configuration Settings.
  4. On the Setting tab, change the value of the LargePhaseOffset Global Group Policy setting. The recommended preset value is 50000000.

    For more information about the LargePhaseOffset setting, visit the following Microsoft Web site:
    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc773263.aspx
Notes
  • A higher value for the LargePhaseOffset setting generates fewer warning messages. Use a higher value if you do not require highly accurate time synchronization.
  • The SpikeWatchPeriod sets the time period that must elapse before the computer’s time is reset after the computer loses synchronization.
  • Depending on your time service infrastructure, you can maintain the available preset values for other Group Policy settings that are not mentioned in this section.

Status

Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in the Microsoft products that are listed in the "Applies to" section.

More information

For more information about Windows Time Service tools and settings, visit the following Microsoft Web site:
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc773263.aspx

Properties

Article ID: 902229 - Last Review: July 6, 2013 - Revision: 6.0
Applies to
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Web Edition
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Standard Edition (32-bit x86)
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition (32-bit x86)
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Enterprise x64 Edition
Keywords: 
kbbug kbfix KB902229

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