Synchronized Clock Systems
Synchronized clocks are key to efficiency. communication, and scheduling within a business. Having synchronized time throughout your facility gets everyone on the same page. Time is a precious commodity and you cannot afford to lose the time that you have! TimeMachines can meet all of your needs for synchronized, accurate time with all of the necessary elements to produce a cost-effective synchronized clock system.
How Do TimeMachines Clock Displays Synchronize Time?
The TimeMachines NTP POE and WiFi clock displays are network based. Since every device is assigned an IP location on your local area network (LAN), by default, they are connected through that network and can provide synchronization without the expense of any master clock that are required components of many of our competitors' systems. Within the TimeMachines clock configuration, you can select primary and secondary time sources for the time display. As long as these time sources are the same for all of your devices, you will have synchronized time... always. If time synchronization is your primary requirement, these displays provide the redundancy of two time sources, without the complication or added expense of additional master clock hardware.
These time sources can be internal or external to your network. Internal devices could be a server, a router, or simply another computer on the local area network (LAN), that can serve time. Alternately, you can also use a public NTP time server like pool.ntp.org or one of the many NIST servers from the internet. Some networks may have security restrictions that do not allow the time sources to be outside of the local network. Also, if you have a lot of devices, relying on only external time sources may not be an optimal solution, but TimeMachines clock displays can utilize either option. Simply put the IP address(es) of the preferred time source(s) into the Primary NTP Server and Secondary NTP Server fields. Once your time sources are configured, set your correct time zone so that the devices are automatically adjusted for Daylight Savings Time, then when it comes time to spring forward or fall back, you won't need to touch a thing. The other configuration to set for synchronization is the SNTP Resync Period. This is the field that sets the frequency with which your displays will "ask" for time from its time sources to maintain synchronization.
Is the synchronized time accurate?
By configuring the same primary and secondary time sources on all of your TimeMachines clock displays, you will automatically have synchronized time displayed throughout your facility. So how accurate is that time? The simple answer is that it depends on the time sources that you selected. Many networks already have Stratum 1 time servers that are on the LAN to make sure that everything on that network has an accurate time source. TimeMachines displays use Simple Network Time Protocol (SNTP) to request time from the primary time source that was configured. If it cannot get a response from that server, then it will automatically request time from the second time source. So the accuracy of time displayed depends on the accuracy of these two time servers. If you are able to designate Stratum 1 time sources that are already on the LAN, then you will have an accurate and synchronized wall clock system simply by adding our displays to your network. TimeMachines displays do not require a master clock, but provide you the flexibility of using your existing network time servers, or any other network device that is capable of serving time to achieve both synchronization and accuracy.
What if you do not have an accurate time source on your network? TimeMachines has simple GPS time servers, the TM1000A and the TM2000A, that can provide secure, Stratum 1 accuracy for both the clock displays and your entire LAN. These time servers use a GPS antenna to receive time information from a range of GPS satellites, which can be configured as your primary and/or secondary NTP time servers for your clock displays. The TM1000A is a simple NTP-only time server that requires a GPS signal lock to serve time within the LAN. The TM2000A adds PTP capabilities, as well as an internal OCXO oscillator to maintain accurate time in the case of a GPS signal loss. The greatest advantage of having an internal GPS time server within your network is that it works even when the internet is down because it receives time independently from the GPS satellites, and it also does not have the latency issues that occur with internet time. If your network does not have already have an internal time server, both the TM1000A and TM2000A can provide a reliable, very accurate time source for all of the devices on your local network, including your clock displays.
Management and Features of a TimeMachines Synchronized Clock System
Synchronization is accomplished through the network connection of our NTP clock diplays. Accuracy is accomplished through your existing network equipment, or can be provided through the use of one of our GPS time servers. So how are all of these devices managed throughout the network? TimeMachines provides TM-Manager, a software solution, to configure, monitor, and manage time and function of all of the TimeMachines devices across your network. This is *free* for download and use from our website - YES FREE!!!
TM-Manager will discover all of the TimeMachines devices on the local subnet with a broadcast message. It allows for configuration of a large group of devices with common parameters and settings. It allows direct control and synchronization of simple count-up and count-down operations for a single unit or a group of the clock displays. This enables you to utilize some, or all of your clock displays, as synchronized timers, while the others continue to function as clocks. This adds some great features and capabilities with NO additional cost. The TM-Manager software is a great tool for managing and monitoring your complete synchronized clock system.
Why Use A TimeMachines Synchronized Clock System?
TimeMachines can provide a full synchronized clock system solution that is reliable, cost-effective, easy to use and flexible. If you have compliance requirements for synchronized, accurate time, it does not need to cost alot, and can work within your existing network. Our clock displays do not require separate master clock equipment. They can provide synchronized time from servers within your network or from internet time servers. Because they are network based, our clock displays do not have the same issues as atomic clocks with reception of the radio signal to maintain synchronized, accurate time. If your network does not have an accurate time source, our Stratum 1 GPS time servers can be added to your network to provide time-serving accuracy for your entire LAN. At TimeMachines we want to provide a flexible, cost-effective solution to all of our customers based on their unique needs.
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