By: Darrell Budic, Director of Network Operations, New Continuum Data Centers
At New Continuum Data Centers, we know time is one of our greatest assets, especially as digital applications are moving faster and end users are demanding more capacity and speed on increasingly critical timelines. Furthermore, accurate time is essential to many aspects of modern computing, from cryptography such as the SSL certificates protecting your web browsing, accurate log collection that enables many security and threat analysis collations, to simply knowing the correct time. As a result, Network Time Protocol (NTP) is one of the critical facets of the Internet, as it maintains and supports time-sensitive applications. To bolster this important initiative, New Continuum recently set up two servers to support the NTP Pool Project.
In operation prior to 1985, NTP, a protocol that synchronizes clocks between computer systems to within milliseconds of perfect Coordinated Universal Time, is one of the oldest Internet protocols in use today. Without proper and accurate time across networks, each individual computer’s clock would incrementally move away from the other and become increasingly disparate. The consequences of wildly-varying times, especially for networks with time-sensitive applications or transactions, could create substantial dysfunction. By helping provide accurate time to end users worldwide through the creation of a virtual cluster of time servers, the NTP Pool Project is maintaining and facilitating an important pillar of a stable, secure Internet.
The New Continuum servers are joining the ranks of several thousand servers worldwide, all of which provide NTP services to millions of computers and Internet of Things (IoT) devices all over the planet. Currently, the NTP Pool provides NTP services to millions of clients, serves as the default time server for most major Linux distributions and more. By using the pool servers, end users and businesses have easy access to many time servers that enable a wide range of use cases.
New Continuum also has a history of dedication to supporting the growth and development of the open internet and its infrastructure. These servers we have set up with NTP Pool continue New Continuum’s commitment to supporting the open Internet. Throughout our history, we have been actively involved with several other initiatives, including joining and volunteering with the Open-IX Association, and maintaining OIX-2 certification of our data center. We also co-founded and manage a non-profit multi-site open peering fabric, United IX, and we recently joined the Open19 Foundation, which is promoting a new form factor for compute elements in a data center. We do all of this through our own N2Open labs here at New Continuum. The N2Open lab works to support new edge technologies, and consults with customers to develop use cases and open new markets.
At our core, we acknowledge that the Internet is a powerful and critical tool capable of facilitating huge progress and productive change. This is why we are dedicated to supporting a free and open Internet. By participating in efforts like the NTP Pool Project, we can rest easy knowing we are doing all we can as a trusted partner and enabler, for our customers and beyond, to facilitate a connected, empowered and innovative Internet for all.