I've had issues with ntp drastically increasing the startup time, and I am not the only one, see for example here. Since it is responsible for adjusting my system time, I see no important reason for it to be started immediately at boot.

How can I make it start after boot instead and still work as it is supposed to? I would appreciate a method that could also be applied to other services.

  • An opposing comment: if you start any time-sensitive services (e.g. databases), you actually want NTP started earlier.
    – Jeff Schaller
    Feb 1 '18 at 23:10
  • In addition to Jeff Schaller's point, which is underscored by the number of systems that you will find are dependent from correct system time, there's the fact that the very same point is made in the AskUbuntu Q&A that you read. In that Q&A, moreover, they wholly miss the wood for the trees, and entirely fail to address the problem of why this is happening, which the questioner only even touches upon as a question comment. That, of course, was addressed on AskUbuntu at least three years earlier at Q&As like askubuntu.com/questions/403616 .
    – JdeBP
    Feb 2 '18 at 3:33
  • But I'm on a desktop and don't have any time-sensitive stuff. Ntp should only make small adjustments anyways or adjust to summertime, so I don't see why I'd need it at boot
    – xeruf
    Feb 2 '18 at 20:48

From the comments in a linked answer, it appears that the issue may be ntpdate. Modern versions of ntpd include the functionality included in ntpdate. I would remove ntpdate if it installed.

Check the startup logs to see if they provide any detail on what is happening in your case.

You may want to run top during startup. This may provide insight into what is happening.


Since systemd parallelizes services startups, you can simply append the sleep command at the beginning of your services.

  • Given one of the potential causes of this behaviour, addressed on AskUbuntu back in 2014, this is an entirely wrongheaded idea that only compounds the problem.
    – JdeBP
    Feb 2 '18 at 3:38

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