Network Time Synchronization, Outlook and the PocketPC
This Mini-How-To was created to help the Small Office/Home Office (SOHO) user configure the Windows Mobile 2003 Operating and Outlook correctly for the local time zone. The following are example screen shots of an iPAQ 5555 running the Windows Mobile 2003 operating system and a Windows XP Professional desktop PC in the US Central Time Zone (GMT-6) which does observe Daylight Saving Time.
Select the correct time zone on both the PocketPC and the desktop
Be careful when setting the PocketPC home time zone setting. Some time zones are the same offset from GMT but do not observe Daylight Saving Time (DST). An example of this is Arizona in the US which is in the US Mountain time zone (GMT-7 Mountain US) but has its own time zone (GMT-7 Arizona). This is because Arizona does not observe DST.
Tap the clock icon on the Today screen. Tap the Time Zone pull-down and select the correct time zone. Tap Yes to save then the ok button at the upper right to exit.
Make sure the desktop time is configured for the correct time zone and to account for DST. The following is an example for a Windows XP Professional machine in the US & Canada Central Time Zone (GMT-06.00) which observes DST. Right-click the mouse on the system clock in the System Tray and click on Adjust Date/Time from the menu. Select the Time Zone tab and configure for the local time zone and DST if applicable. Note that the user must have Administrator permissions to configure date and time on a Windows XP machine.
Configure ActiveSync on the desktop to automatically update the PocketPC system clock when the PocketPC is connected. Open ActiveSync on the desktop and go to Tools | Options | Sync Options.
On the desktop make sure Outlook is configured correctly for the local time zone. Open the desktop Outlook and go to Tools | Options | Calendar Options.
Important Note: If your running Outlook 2002 then make sure you install SP2 to correct a problem with DST...
The Network Time Protocol, time synchronization and the desktop PC
The Network Time Protocol (NTP) is widely used in the Internet to synchronize computer clocks to national standard time. The SOHO user may configure a built-in NTP program (Windows XP) or add a third-party application to their desktop PC in order to maintain a high degree of time synchronization.
Windows XP NTP time synchronization configuration
Right-click the mouse on the system clock in the System Tray and click on Adjust Date/Time from the menu. Select the Internet Time tab. The user can either use the default time server or the user can simply type in the address of a new time server in the Server: address box. Tap Update Now to verify the server connection can be made. Tap OK to finish the configuration. Note that the user must have Administrator permissions to configure date and time on a Windows XP machine.
Third-partly NTP synchronization software and public time server information
Third-party time synchronization software...
Public NTP time servers...
How to change the Windows XP internet time update frequency
The user can increase or decrease the frequency of updates by making a simple registry change. Add or change the SpecialPollInterval DWORD setting. Note the value is in seconds...
For example the value is set to 3600 on my XP machines (that's in seconds), so the XP machines poll the time server once each hour.
|Update Interval||Decimal DWORD Value (Seconds)|
IMPORTANT: This procedure contains information about modifying the registry. Before you modify the registry, make sure to back it up and make sure that you understand how to restore the registry if a problem occurs. For information about how to back up, restore, and edit the registry, click the following article numbers to view the Microsoft Knowledge Base articles:
256986 - Description of the Microsoft Windows Registry
322756 - HOW TO: Back Up, Edit, and Restore the Registry in Windows XP.
On the XP machine, log on as an Administrative user.
Go to Start -> Run and type regedit at the command prompt.
Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\W32Time\TimeProviders\NtpClient\
Add or change the DWORD of SpecialPollInterval with a decimal value in seconds. See KB article 322756
Go to File -> Exit
Log off the Administrator account and reboot the PC.