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How to Sync Time with a Server on Raspberry Pi? –

Raspberry Pi has a software-based system for synchronizing time with servers. However, sometimes this doesn’t work as intended. This guide will show you how to make sure your Raspberry Pi is keeping updated on the date and time!

Syncing time with a server on the Raspberry Pi is possible, but it’s not an easy task. This tutorial will show you how to sync your time to a computer or website using the clock command in Python.

The “raspberry pi system clock synchronized: no” is a problem that many people have been having. The solution to this problem is to use the “Raspbian Jessie Lite” operating system on your Raspberry Pi.

Do you have problems setting the time on your Raspberry Pi? Perhaps you’d want to synchronize the time with another server? I’ll teach you all you need to know about time synchronization on the Raspberry Pi in this article (and on Linux in general).

For time synchronization, a Raspberry Pi utilizes timedatectl on a fresh installation. Servers may be updated in the /etc/systemd/timesyncd.conf configuration file. If necessary, the NTP service may also be setup.

I’ll show you how Linux’s time synchronization works and how to set it up the way you want it. I’ll show you how to accomplish it on a Raspberry Pi in two ways: – Timedatectl: comes pre-installed and is simple to set up. – NTP: for better interoperability with other systems, this is the traditional approach to handle it on Linux. Finally, I’ll show you some more helpful date and time commands for the Raspberry Pi.

By the way, if you’re serious about increasing your Raspberry Pi abilities, I strongly advise you to read my e-book. It’s a 30-day challenge that takes you from novice to expert, with step-by-step instructions and plenty of projects to work on.

Introducing synchronization of time

Take a look at my cheat sheet! Get your free PDF file with all the Raspberry Pi instructions you’ll ever need!

Before I get into the technical details and instructions, I’d want to explain how time synchronization works on Linux, Raspberry Pi, and most current devices.

On a network, having the same time on all computers is critical. If your machine is even 5 minutes late, you won’t be able to connect to Active Directory or Samba shares (check my tutorial on how to join an Active Directory with a Raspberry Pi). As a result, we’ll need to put up network-based time-synchronization systems.

This function is performed by the NTP protocol. Basically, you set up your computer to ask another computer for the time and then use the response to set its current time (it’s a bit more complicated than that, but knowing it is already helpful).

How-to-Sync-Time-with-a-Server-on-Raspberry-PiProtocol for Network Time (source: Wikipedia)

On most networks, there is a master server that receives the current time from an Internet server. After that, all computers will be in sync with this master.

I’ll teach you how to set this up using timedatectl or NTP directly in this article.

This video is helpful if you need additional information about the theory before proceeding:

If you just want to manually set the date and time on your Raspberry Pi, there are simpler methods to do it. You don’t have to make any adjustments to the time synchronization.

Timedatectl is a command for synchronizing the time on the Raspberry Pi.

On the Raspberry Pi, what is Timedatectl?

Timedatectl is a command-line program for adjusting the date and time. Timedatectl is included by default in latest Raspberry Pi OS releases.

I’ll teach you how to check the current status using the first command:

status timedatectl

This should result in something similar to this:


As a result, you’ll get:

  • The time in your area.
  • The time of the universe (same thing by default).
  • If configured, the RTC time (module not included on Raspberry Pi).
  • The time zone in which you are now (GMT by default).
  • The current state of network time synchronization.

My Raspberry Pi is already time synced by default, as you can see (except the time zone).

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Commands for timedatectl

Before we go into the timedatectl settings, I’d want to teach you a few commands that you can use right now.

Are you having trouble navigating the Linux command line? Check out this post for the most critical commands to memorize, as well as a free cheat sheet you can download to keep the commands close to hand.

Make a list of time zones.

If you want to alter the default time zone, you must first understand all of the options. Use the following command to do this:

list-timezones timedatectl

Because the list is lengthy, you may use the grep tool to narrow it down:

list-timezones | grep America list-timezones timedatectl | grep Sydney timedatectl


Make a mental note of your local time zone and use it with the following command.

Choose a time zone.

Use the following command to change the current time zone:

set-timezone sudo timedatectl

Consider the following scenario:

set-timezone sudo timedatectl America/New York set-time sudo timedatectlzone Europe/Paris sudo timedatectl set-timezone Australia/Sydney sudo timedatectl set-timezone Europe/Paris sudo timedatectl set-timezone Europe/Paris sudo timedatectl set-timezone Europe/Paris sudo timedatectl set-timezone Europe

Check the current time using the status timedatectl command once again.

In raspi-config > Localization options > Change time zone, you may also change the time zone.

Manually set the time

You may also use timedatectl to manually set the time. Here’s how to do it:

set-time ‘Y:M:D’ sudo timedatectl sudo timedatectl set-time HH:mm:ss’ sudo timedatectl set-time ‘Y:M:D’ HH:mm:ss’

Consider the following scenario:

set-time ’12:00:00′ sudo timedatectl

However, you must deactivate time synchronization in order to do so (see next paragraph).

Time synchronization may be enabled or disabled.

Use the following instructions to deactivate or enable time synchronization:

set-ntp false sudo timedatectl set-ntp true sudo timedatectl

To effect this modification, you may need to reboot the Raspberry Pi (see comments).

That’s all; you now have a rudimentary understanding of the timedatectl commands.

The Timedatectl configuration file is used to synchronize time with a server.

Here’s how to use timedatectl to set up time synchronization with a server:

Your date and time will now be synced with the servers provided in this configuration file, albeit a reboot may be required to refresh the setup.


NTP (Network Transport Protocol) is a protocol that

NTP is another option for time synchronization in Linux. Even if timedatectl is replacing it in newer versions of Debian and Ubuntu, it is still widely used on Linux systems.

I’m not clear what the distinctions are between the two and why they’re switching to timedatectl. But, in my opinion, timedatectl is for clients since it is simple to use and setup right out of the box. And, to sync time with it and have more configuration choices, NTP is probably best on a server.

Configuration of NTP

Configuration of NTP

NTP is not accessible by default on the Raspberry Pi OS, as I previously said. You’ll need to use apt to install it:

ntp sudo apt install

NTP configuration

The NTP configuration file may be found here: /etc/ntpd.conf You may update it to add a new time synchronization server (lines that start with “pool”).

You may also adjust the server settings (restrict access, broadcast time, etc.) in this file if you wish to utilize your Raspberry Pi as an NTP server.

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Commands of the NTP protocol

Because everything is in the configuration file, NTP has fewer instructions than timedatectl. This one, on the other hand, may be used to administer the ntp server daemon:

status of service ntp | start | stop | restart


You may install and use the ntpdate tool to force time synchronization.


sudo apt-get update ntpdate

Compare your current delay to that of a server:

ntpdate -q ntpdate -q sudo ntpdate -q sudo ntpdate – sudo ntpdate –

In my situation, the offset was 0.005s. It verifies that the NTP server is operational.

Now is the time to fix the delay:

The NTP daemon will gradually correct the delay. However, if you need to correct it right now, you may use:

service ntp stop ntpdate sudo sudo service ntp start sudo

Before using ntpdate to release the port, you must first stop the NTP daemon.

You’ll end up with something similar to this:1635003461_202_How-to-Sync-Time-with-a-Server-on-Raspberry-Pi


Here’s a video that walks you through the procedure step by step:

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How can I get my Raspberry Pi’s time to match?

On the Raspberry Pi OS, time synchronization is enabled by default. To establish the right time on your system, use raspi-config or the Raspberry Pi setup utility to adjust the timezone. The welcome screen will also ask for your timezone on the first boot.

On a Raspberry Pi, how do I manually adjust the date and time?

On a Lite edition, you’ll use raspi-config to set the date and time, and if you have a desktop environment, you’ll use the Raspberry Pi setup tool. To set the time in one command, use the command sudo timedatectl set-time ‘HH:mm:ss’.

On my Raspberry Pi, how can I get the date and time?

On a desktop version, the date and time are shown in the top-right corner, but on any Linux distribution, you may run “date” in a terminal to receive the current date and time.

To put it simply,

Commands for timedatectl

Command Description
timedatectl status The current configuration is shown.
timedatectl list-timezones Make a list of the time zones that you may utilize.
sudo timedatectl set-timezone Set the time zone to your current location.
sudo timedatectl set-time Manually set the date and time.
timedatectl set-ntp true/false> sudo timedatectl set-ntp true/false> Time synchronization may be enabled or disabled.

Commands of the NTP protocol

Command Description
sudo apt install ntp ntpdate ntpdate ntpdate ntpdate ntpdate NTP and ntpdate should be installed.
status of service ntp | start | stop | restart In charge of the NTP service
sudo ntpdate -q Examine the time difference between you and a server.
sudo ntpdate The synchronization server should be changed (NTP service should be turned off)


Take a look at my cheat sheet! Get your free PDF file with all the Raspberry Pi instructions you’ll ever need!

You’ve learned how to modify the date and time on your Raspberry Pi, as well as how to synchronize the clocks of many Linux machines connected to the same network.

This may not seem important at home or in a small network, but it is critical in larger networks.

More instructions similar to this one may be found at:

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Resources for the Raspberry Pi

Don’t know where to begin? Learn all there is to know about the Raspberry Pi, stop looking for assistance all the time, and start enjoying your projects. Now you may watch the Raspberry Pi Bootcamp course.

In only 30 days, you’ll have mastered the Raspberry Pi. You don’t want just the basics? This book is for you if you want to learn the best ways to become a Raspberry Pi expert. With step-by-step instructions, you may learn important Linux skills and perform a variety of tasks. Get the e-book here.

VIP Members’ Club You may also join the Patreon community if you simply want to hang out with me and show your support. I provide you early access to my stuff and share behind-the-scenes information there. When you join, you’ll also receive a shoutout. More information may be found here. Do you need assistance building anything using Python? Any Python script for your Raspberry Pi may be created, understood, and improved. Learn the basics in a step-by-step manner, rather than wasting time on irrelevant ideas. Now is the time to get the e-book.

This website also contains all of my tool and hardware suggestions.

The “raspberry pi ntp not working” is a common problem that many people are facing. The “How to sync time with a server on Raspberry Pi?” article will help you fix the issue.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I sync the time on my Raspberry Pi?

A: You can sync the time on your Raspberry Pi by using NTP. NetTime Protocol is a specification for synchronizing clocks in computer networks, and is commonly used as an alternative to Syncronisys.

How do I sync time between server and client?

A: I dont know how to answer this.

How do I sync local time NTP server?

A: You can sync your local time to an NTP server by following these steps. 1) Access the Time tab at the bottom of the main menu. 2) Select Time Synchronization. 3) Select a method from the dropdown on how you would like to sync your computers clock with an external source, then click next step. 4) Enter in any applicable information about your PC and agree to terms of service before clicking Next Step. 5) A pop-up will ask for confirmation that you want to use this setting on all applications using Windows 10 features that are not compatible with changing update settings such as Hyper-V or DirectAccess (this is something Microsoft does). Click OK if you wish, then follow through until it says Successfully synchronized when done; otherwise skip ahead back into Settings > Time Sync and try again until successful.

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