UCAR Communications


staff notes monthly

December 2002 / January 2003

Delphi Questions
Phone messaging clock

Delphi Question #495 (received 31 October): Why does the phone-message clock drift? Can’t it set itself automatically using a timeserver? If not, can it be set manually on a daily basis?

Response (1 November): The current five phonemail systems that UCAR uses are based on technology that is over 10 years old. The systems’ clocks rely on their internal computer clocks, which are drifting more as they age. Their only connection is to the telephone system, which does not provide clocking. They do not have a network connection; therefore, they cannot be updated by using a network timeserver.

Each system is independent. Some drift more than others; all of them drift less than five minutes a month. We check the time when we perform maintenance on the systems. Changing the system time without running cleanup utilities, which can only be performed with the system down, results in delayed messages. So we do not feel that changing the system time on a daily basis is an appropriate solution.

We are in the process of evaluating a new voice messaging system for UCAR that does utilize the network and allows the syncing of clocks using a timeserver, as well as offering other features of benefit to UCAR.

—Marla Meehl, manager
Network Engineering and Telecommunications Section

Questions and suggestions from the staff to management may be submitted in confidence to the Delphi Coordinator. They should be submitted in written form, preferably via interoffice mail in a sealed envelope marked confidential. They must be signed. Detailed procedures for submitting questions are given in the UCAR Policies and Procedures Manual, section 4-1-2, and on the Delphi Web site. Staff Notes Monthly publishes questions and answers of general interest to staff, and the Delphi Web site has a log of all questions submitted since 1995.

Also in this issue...

The Outstanding Accomplishment Awards

Coffee for 1,200?
JOSS group provides logistics for conferences, field programs

NCAR supercomputer joins list of world’s fastest

From Africa and South America

Scientists explore fundamental building blocks of the atmosphere

NCAR's influence: Way beyond its size

Sittin' with Santa

Climate convocation mulls the state of U.S. research


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