Best Practice 12.1 – Use NTP to maintain time synchronization on devices - IoT Lens Checklist

Best Practice 12.1 – Use NTP to maintain time synchronization on devices

IoT devices need to have a client to keep track of time—either using Real Time Clock (RTC) or Network Time Protocol (NTP) to set the RTC on boot. Failure to provide accurate time to an IoT device could prevent it from being able to connect to the cloud.

Recommendation 12.1.1 – Prefer NTP to RTC when NTP synchronization is available

  • Many computers have an RTC peripheral that helps in keeping time. Consider that RTC is prone to clock drift of about 1 second a day, which can result in the device going offline because of certificate invalidity.

Recommendation 12.1.2 – Use Network Time Protocol for connected applications

  • Select a safe, reliable ntp pool to use, and a one that addresses your security design.

  • Many operating systems include an NTP client to sync with an NTP server

  • If the IoT device is using GNU/Linux, it’s likely to include the ntpd daemon

  • You can import an NTP client to your platform if using FreeRTOS

  • The device’s software needs to include an NTP client and should wait until it has synchronized with an NTP server before attempting a connection with AWS IoT Core

  • The system should provide a way for a user to set the device’s time so that subsequent connections can succeed.

  • Use NTP to synchronize RTC on the device to prevent the device from deviating from UTC

  • is a different implementation of NTP than what ntpd uses and it’s able to synchronize the system clock faster and with better accuracy than ntpd. Chrony can be set up as a client and server.