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Windows 7

Stop Synchronizing the Time

SUMMARY: For privacy reasons, prevent Windows 7 from synchronizing the system time with an Internet time server.

By default if you are not the member of a domain, Windows 7 periodically synchronizes your computer time with an Internet time server, time.windows.com. This way if your system clock loses a few seconds (or worse), Windows can periodically adjust it as necessary, helping prevent file synchronization problems with backups and other issues.

While many people appreciate the automatic synchronizations, others may have privacy issues with their computer periodically communicating with a public time server. Thus this synchronization can be disabled. Note that if you do so, you may find it important to occasionally manually adjust the system time.

1. Click on the taskbar clock and click "Change date and time settings" when the popup appears.

2. The "Date and Time" multi-tabbed dialog box appears. Click the "Internet Time" tab.

3. Click the "Change settings" button.

Changing Windows 7's Internet Time settings

4. If the User Account Control dialog box appears, click "Yes".

5. The "Internet Time Settings" dialog box appears. Uncheck "Synchronize with an Internet time server".

6. Click "OK" on the dialog boxes to close them.

Disabling synchronizing a Windows 7 machine with an Internet time server

This tip was written for Windows 7 RC. Screenshots and information are subject to change between this and the official release of Windows 7.

Return to the Windows 7 page.

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The MalekTips website was created in 1998 by Andrew Malek of Envision Programming. The page's goal is to freely disperse computer-related tips, hints, and informative articles. Tips are organized to be easy to find, and are presented clearly, in easy-to-understand language. MalekTips also provides information and links to public-domain, open source, freeware, shareware, and commercial software available for download.