From Fedora Project Wiki

ntp replacement


The ntp package is replaced with ntpsec.


Current status

Detailed Description

ntp is one of the few NTP implementations provided in Fedora. It is not used or installed by default.

The upstream project is not in a good shape and it doesn't seem to be improving. The development is slow and happens behind closed doors. There is a significant number of known security issues that have not been fixed yet. Some are exploitable in the default configuration.

ntpsec is a fork of ntp with focus on security. It has removed a lot of code and fixed or avoided most of the security issues in ntp. It doesn't support all features, but in typical configurations it can be used as a drop-in replacement for ntp.

There are few packages in Fedora that have a dependency on ntp:

  • nagios-plugins-ntp-perl
  • ntpstat

Drivers for hardware reference clocks stay in Fedora in a form of a standalone wrapper in the ntp-refclock package. They can be used by other NTP implementations.

Benefit to Fedora

This change makes Fedora more secure.


  • Proposal owners:
  1. Package ntpsec obsoleting the ntp package.
  2. Retire the ntp package.
  3. Make sure the dependent packages still work.
  • Other developers: N/A (not a System Wide Change)
  • Release engineering: N/A (not needed for this Change)
  • Policies and guidelines: N/A (not a System Wide Change)
  • Trademark approval: N/A (not needed for this Change)

Upgrade/compatibility impact

The ntp package is replaced automatically with ntpsec on upgrade to Fedora 34. If the original ntpd and/or ntp-wait services were enabled, they are re-enabled in the upgrade. The original configuration file /etc/ntp.conf and directory /etc/ntp are reused by ntpsec.

How To Test

  • Install ntpsec
  • Run ntpdate
  • Start the ntpd service
  • Run ntpq -p to verify ntpd is polling servers and synchronizing the clock

User Experience

For most users of ntp, the experience is not expected to change significantly. Advanced configurations may need to be modified to work with ntpsec. The system log will contain error or warning messages from ntpd if unsupported directives or options are present in the configuration. For monitoring, the ntpq tool works as before.


N/A (not a System Wide Change)

Contingency Plan

  • Contingency mechanism: Unretire ntp and remove the obsoletes in ntpsec
  • Contingency deadline: Fedora 34 Beta
  • Blocks release? N/A (not a System Wide Change)
  • Blocks product?


N/A (not a System Wide Change)

Release Notes

The classic ntpd service was formerly provided by the ntp package. The ntp software has significant security issues and slow development. It has now been replaced with the ntpsec package, an actively maintained fork of the ntp software. No functional changes are expected for most users. Users should check the system log for errors and warnings from the new ntpd service and modify /etc/ntp.conf as necessary.