Installation of NTP wording

Samuel Thurston, III sam.thurston at
Sat Nov 7 01:31:11 GMT 2009

On Fri, Nov 6, 2009 at 3:34 PM, Kevin Hunter <hunteke at> wrote:
> Hiya List,
> I'm new to this list; I don't know if this is the right place for this
> question/suggestion, so please direct me as appropriate.  I want to ask
> a list before "bothering" devs with a potentially spurious
> bug/enhancement ticket.

Shame on you! this list is for political rants and histrionic diatribes only!
No really though, this is probably better suited to a support ticket.
Nobody on this list actually does anything. :)

> I went to install NTP, and noted that the wording ... could be a bit
> friendlier.  (I'm writing this email from another computer just now, so
> bear with me as I don't copy the wording exactly.)  In no place did the
> dialog explain what NTP is (Network Time Protocol); it did allude to
> keeping synchronized with the Internet, but I think it could be a little
> less opaque by simply defining NTP to be Network Time Protocol.

Doesn't NTP install by default?  I thought it used to.  But if you are
correct, and I suspect you might be, then yes it should have a better
explanation, even than spelling out the acronym.  Because I think if I
was a non-techie I would think that network time protocol is some kind
of benchmarking thing.

"Automatically set your computer's clock from an internet server"
might be more helpful.

> To us this isn't a problem, but to an end-user that I'll liken to my
> father, most-things-computer are scary.  Having helpful signs, like the
> fairly innocuous words for which NTP stands, would be an easy usability
> and approachability improvement to make.

"Protocol" is innocuous only for those of us who use it on a regular
basis.  "Network" is less innocuous for those of us who use it on a
regular basis.

This would have been a great "papercuts" ticket... hopefully they'll
do that project again.  They should re-open it every time they finish
100... it's not like there aren't thousands to go.

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