Netgear WNDR3400 (N600 category) router messes up time

Discussion in 'hardware' started by act8192, Sep 30, 2011.

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  1. act8192

    act8192 Registered Member

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    Problem:
    Unlike Linksys routers I have, this one does not get its time correctly, often for hours.
    Time is set on the e-mail menu item. No I am not kidding. Has to do with mailing the tiny logs (128 4-line items, virtually useless in the GUI).

    1. Selection of time zone can be made, but after saving the settings, time zone reverts to Pacific US zone. Which would be ok, if the below issues didn't exist.
    2. Time is also wrong after a router configuration is changed and saved.
    3. Powering the router off and back on also changes the time, which might not get updated for hours. If ever. It appears the user has to watch and force the manual change.

    Google search is full of reports about the time in this and some other Netgear routers. Common advice is to deselect adjusting for daylight saving. Doesn't work.

    Apparently Netgear isn't fixing it for years now. That assertion is so hard to believe, that I thought I'd post here and ask Netgear users what their experience is and solutions, if any exist.

    Edit: other than the time issues, nice router. Signal strength slightly better than my Linksys WRT54G.
     
  2. Bill_Bright

    Bill_Bright Registered Member

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    Have you tried to reset the router? My guess is the DNS Server entries may be missing or corrupt. Note, a power cycle does not reset all.
     
  3. act8192

    act8192 Registered Member

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    Sure I did a reset among other things. And here's an eight-point summary of a repeat of reset:
    TimeSummary.png

    On reset, DNS servers are those of the ISP. They always work fine on two Linksys routers and the computer. Later I add OpenDNS. In both cases time gets messed up in this fancy Netgear box, and I'm totally out of ideas.

    If you can't trust a simple time synchronization in a router, can you trust it's filtering? Signal strength? Monthly use Traffic meter (use statistics)?
     
  4. Bill_Bright

    Bill_Bright Registered Member

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    Sure. Note the minutes and seconds are exactly right so this is just an offset issue. Netgear makes good stuff so don't worry about that. And note a router is really a pretty low-tech device so in terms of security (the most important aspect of using a router) you can feel confident that is working fine.

    For the record, I have a Netgear Wireless-N Gigabit Router Model WNR3500L and it uses (or at least appears to use) the exact same menu system and I think you are setting the Time Zone incorrectly and you (via your router setting) are causing confusion with your ISP/DNS Servers.

    You said you set it to "whatever is GMT-4". That is wrong. That is for "Atlantic Time (Canada), Caracas, La Paz, Santiago" and that is not the correct one for the East Coast.

    The East Coast of the US is in the "Eastern Time Zone". The corresponding correct setting for the East Coast should then, therefore, be set to (my bold added):

    "(GMT-05:00) Bogata, Lima, Quito, Eastern Time (US & Canada)"

    And you should tick "Automatically adjust for daylight savings time".

    Give that a try and let us know what happens.
     
  5. act8192

    act8192 Registered Member

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    I have been through the "correct" settings. That's when I noticed the error.

    When I googled for solutions, one of the many theories was that the "adjust for daylight setting" was the culprit. Incidentally, it goes as far back as 2005 on some of those routers. Some threads claim that the ntp servers are hard coded and buggy at that
    Anyway, I tried with the "adjust" disabled for several days, and that's why I selected a "wrong" zone - simply in order to have -4hrs offset, silly as it appears to be.

    Regardless, when saving a modifed setting - such as add a MAC for some computer - changes the clock, it's bad news for those that schedule things, which is one of the interesting settings available in this router.

    A very simple workaround is to think you're in the sunny California, and let it be Pacific zone forever, just get used to it, if other features are important.
    The radio signal strength is better than the current router here - and that is the primary reason for trying to see how to make it work. Two days left to a return/keep decision!

    Edit: I don't want to change DNS settings. Open DNS is in the firewall, TCP/IP adapter properties, and normally in the router. Computer has no problem doing correct time with, for instance, time-a.nist.gov, so why should a router have a problem, unless their, hard coded maybe, server doesn't exist, in which case, IMO, they should issue new firmware.
    Current varsion here is:
    Hardware Version WNDR3400
    Firmware Version V1.0.0.38_16.0.48
    GUI Language Version V1.0.0.38_2.1.9.1

    OT: 3500L can have DDwrt. Do you use that?
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2011
  6. Bill_Bright

    Bill_Bright Registered Member

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    No, I use Netgear's firmware, V1.0.2.26_30.0.98NA

    If you have OpenDNS IPs set in the router, you don't need them set in your computers too. The reason to put it in the router is so you don't need to dink with the local (computer) settings.
     
  7. act8192

    act8192 Registered Member

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    Thanks.
    OpenDNS: Actually I do need it in the computer 'cause it's not glued to the floor. A laptop can go anywhere and so I like to have it set in the TCP/IP properties and the firewall. I never yet had a problem at home or any other place. Should I see a DNS trouble outside the house, I'll remove it in the computer. Or use the alternative settings.
     
  8. xxJackxx

    xxJackxx Registered Member

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    I have the N750 and it is the greatest router I have ever used, apart from having the same issue with the time/date. They use a hardcoded time server in their firmware. They could fix this issue by just allowing us to set our own time server. Unfortunately even though there have been many complaints on their forum, it has not happened. Fortunately for me I have not been severely affected by the problem.
     
  9. act8192

    act8192 Registered Member

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    When the Netgear log showed "[Time synchronized with NTP server]", a router in front of this Netgear reports that the connection was to
    time-b.netgear.com (12.151.34.170:123). Their own clock I suppose :)

    DNSstuff.com:
    IP Information - 12.151.34.170
    IP address: 12.151.34.170
    Reverse DNS: nsone.netgear.com.
    Reverse DNS authenticity: [Verified]
    ASN: 7018
    ASN Name: ATT-INTERNET4
    IP range connectivity: 8
    Registrar (per ASN): ARIN
    Country (per IP registrar): US [United States]
    Country Currency: USD [United States Dollars]
    Country IP Range: 12.0.0.0 to 13.255.255.255
    Country fraud profile: Normal
    City (per outside source): Danbury, Connecticut
    Country (per outside source): US [United States]
    Private (internal) IP? No
    IP address registrar: whois.arin.net
    Known Proxy? No
    Link for WHOIS: 12.151.34.170

    Whois:
    HOLOGIC INC HOLOGIC-55-34-128 (NET-12-151-34-128-1) 12.151.34.128 - 12.151.34.255

    Hmmm, Danbury, Connecticut. Just around the corner. Not exactly Pacific zone. Go figure.
     
  10. act8192

    act8192 Registered Member

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    I'm not all that affected either. But they are selling a product which advertises logging, scheduling of access and few other clock-related things. That's false information in the manual and on the box, and of course a product with those features being totally worthless. And they've been doing it for years now according to everything I've googled out. Not a word about it in their FAQs. How can they get away with this?

    They should ask Linksys how its done invisibly and always correctly :)
     
  11. zfactor

    zfactor Registered Member

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    im actually a netgear reseller (as well as linksys) i can forward this directly to engineering for you if you would like negear does not directly monitor or read their forums its not actually run by netgear. XXJACKXX which firmware are you using currently?
     
  12. act8192

    act8192 Registered Member

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    Please do, the sooner the better, great idea :)
    Let's hope they wake up and fix in this and in all their other routers people complain about all over the web.
     
  13. zfactor

    zfactor Registered Member

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    i have send my contacts a link to this thread and a explanation of what they need to see. i will let you know if i get a update. im also a netgear hardware beta tester so i will get it to all channels i can
     
  14. act8192

    act8192 Registered Member

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    Hey, zfactor
    This is funny. One neighbor has Netgear WGR614v10. Older and simple just one radio 2.4GHz. Signal strength outside the house good or slightly better than the 3400 one. The really funny part is - the clock is correct, time zone is correct, scheduling is correct, logs are correct, it's totally perfect. It uses the same time server IP range as WNDR3400, yet it works.

    So my suggestion that Netgear learns from Linksys how to do the clock correctly is not needed. They already did it correctly at least once and forgot how to do it again (or one team doesn't talk to another) :)
     
  15. Bill_Bright

    Bill_Bright Registered Member

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    And as I noted, I have a WNR3500L and it is all correct too. So this appears to be a bug with a small sample of devices.
    My logs do not show where or how the time is synchronized. Where are you seeing that?
     
  16. act8192

    act8192 Registered Member

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    In 3400 and 614, in order to have anything in the log other than startup and admin login, enable something, anything, in the Block Sites menu. I just added something like xyyyyyyyxxxxxxxxxxx for word and zzzzzzzzxxxxxxxx.com for site, and check keyword blocking to always. Don't blame the messenger :)
     
  17. xxJackxx

    xxJackxx Registered Member

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    I'll have to double check that when I get home. I would have thought the latest one but after a quick search it looks like there may have been another update. I am running the first update that was released after the original. I will make sure it is up to date tonight and report back.

    - Just upgraded to V1.0.0.82_8.0.71. It rebooted with the correct time and date so no problem, but it would be nice if a time server could be entered manually like D-Link allows on the DIR-655 we have at work. This is a WAY better router than the D-Link though.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2011
  18. firstamendment

    firstamendment Registered Member

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    I have a WNDR3700. It currently shows the time as Tuesday, Jan 4 2000. You can see from the date and time of this post how far off it is. The menu lets me check for firmware updates and it says I have the latest. I had a different Netgear router before this one. It had the same problem. Very frustrating because I can't turn off my network via a set schedule (which is one of the features of the router). I'm wanting to turn it off each night automatically so my kids will go to sleep instead of staying up all night with their devices.
     
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