What Is NTP Jitter?

By Darren Johannsen

NTP Jitter helps compensate for communication delay on a network.
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Network Time Protocol (NTP) protocol is used for synchronizing the clocks of multiple computers on a network. When information is sent across a network, there is a small delay before it is received. NTP is a tool used to calculate and compensate for this delay.

NTP Jitter

NTP jitter is a measurement of the variance in latency on the network. If the latency on the network is constant, there is no jitter.


Network latency is the time delay between when data is sent on a network to when it is received. Latency can make it difficult to synchronize processes over a network, especially when the latency is variable.

Purpose of NTP

NTP allows computers to synchronize their clocks across a network. To do so, NTP requests the current time from a reliable reference clock. It then estimates the latency between the reference clock and the computer and then calculates the true time.