• Making sure your PC's clock is synced with Internet time means you won't have issues with accessing content while in your local time zone.
  • Sometimes, clock syncing with time.windows.com may result in errors, and that is when you should apply the steps written in the guide below.
  • This is just one of many articles included in our dedicated hub created for solving Windows 10 issues , so check it out since you never know when you may need it again.
  • Visit our specialized page dedicated to Fix guides for more troubleshooting articles.
fix windows clock sync

Automatic clock synchronization has been a part of Windows for years, and this feature is also present in Windows 10. Unfortunately, few users are having some issues with clock synchronization and they are reporting An error occurred while windows was synchronizing with time.windows.com error message.


How can I fix the time.windows.com synchronization error?

Table of contents:

  1. Check if Windows Time service is running
  2. Use a different server
  3. Restart Windows Time service
  4. Use Command Prompt
  5. Disable your third-party firewall
  6. Change the default update interval
  7. Add more servers to the registry
  8. Change registry values

1. Check if Windows Time service is running

  1. Press Windows Key + R and enter services.msc. Press
  2. Enter or click OK.
    services-1
  3. When the Services window opens, locate Windows Time service and double click it to open its properties.
    services-2
  4. Set Startup type to Automatic and click the Start button to start Windows Time service.
  5. After doing that, click Apply and OK to save changes.
    services-3

Time synchronization feature relies heavily on Windows Time service, and if Windows Time service isn’t running, you might encounter this error.


Need additional info on how to fix the Windows Time service on your PC? Take a look at this dedicated guide.


2. Use a different server

  1. Press Windows Key + S and enter the date.
  2. Select Date and Time from the menu.
    date-1
  3. When Date and Time window opens, go to Internet Time and click the Change settings button.
    date-2
  4. Select time.nist.gov as the Server and click the Update now button.
    • Some users also reported that using pool.ntp.org as the server fixes this problem, so you can try using it as well.
  5. Click OK to save changes.
    date-3 an error occurred while windows was synchronizing with time.windows.com

Users reported that they managed to fix this problem simply by using a different server. There are different time servers that you can use, and some of them are time-a.nist.gov, time-b.nist.gov, time-a.timefreq.bldrdoc.gov, and time-b.timefreq.bldrdoc.gov.

Before trying this solution, make sure that Windows Time service is set to Automatic and running. For detailed instructions on how to do that, be sure to have a look at our previous solution.


3. Restart Windows Time service

  1. Go to Services and open Windows Time service properties.
  2. Go to Log On tab and select the Local System account option. Check Allow service to interact with desktop option.
  3. After that, click Apply and OK and restart your PC.

In order to fix this issue, you might have to restart the Windows Time service. To do that, open the Services window and double click the Windows Time service to open its properties.

If the service is running, stop it. Set the Startup Type to Automatic and start the service again. Click Apply and OK to save changes and restart your computer.

Some users are also suggesting to change Log On settings of Windows Time service before applying changes and restarting your PC.  Keep in mind that you need to do this step right after restarting the Windows Time service.


4. Use Command Prompt

According to users, you can fix this issue simply by using Command Prompt and running a few commands. To do that, follow these steps:

  1. Press Windows Key + X to open the Win+X menu and choose Command Prompt (Admin).
    error-occurred-windows-synchronizing-time-windows-com-cmd-1
  2. When Command Prompt starts, enter the following commands:
    • w32tm /debug /disable
    • w32tm /unregister
    • w32tm /register
    • net start w32time
  3. If everything was successful, you should see “The windows Time Service is starting. The windows time service was started successfully.” message.
  4. Close Command Prompt and try to synchronize your clock.

If you’re having trouble accessing Command Prompt as an admin, then you better take a closer look on this guide.


5. Disable your third-party firewall

Firewall tools are always useful because they prevent potentially dangerous applications from accessing the Internet. Unfortunately, sometimes these tools can interfere with your clock and cause this error to appear.

To fix this error, be sure to temporarily disable your firewall and check if that fixes the problem. If the issue persists, you might want to uninstall your firewall completely.

Users reported that after switching to Standard mode in their firewall or after disabling it completely, they were able to synchronize their clock without any problems.

In addition, you might want to configure your firewall to unlock NPT access on UDP port 123. If you changed your router’s firewall configuration, you might have to unlock UDP port 123 on your router as well.

Do you need to configure your router? Modify any settings easily with these software tools.


Check if your Firewall is blocking a port or an app with some simple steps from this complete guide.


6. Change the default update interval

  1. Press Windows Key + R and enter regedit.
  2. Press Enter or click OK.
    reg-1 an error occurred while windows was synchronizing with time.windows.com
  3. When Registry Editor starts, navigate to the following key in the left pane:
    • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMCurrentControlSetServicesW32TimeTimeProvidersNtpClient .
  4. Double click the SpecialPollInterval key.
    reg-2 an error occurred while windows was synchronizing with time.windows.com
  5. In the Base section select Decimal.
    • By default Value, data should be set to 604800.
    • This number represents 7 days in seconds, but you can change it to 86400 so it represents 1 day.
  6. After doing that, click OK to save changes.
    reg-3

Sometimes these errors can occur due to your update interval, but you can easily fix this error by changing few values in your registry.

We have to warn you that modifying your registry can lead to system stability issues if you don’t do it properly, therefore you might want to create a backup of your registry just in case.


Can’t access the Registry Editor? Things aren’t as scary as they seem. Check out this guide and solve the issue quickly.


7. Add more servers to the registry

  1. Open Registry Editor and navigate to the following key in the left pane:
    • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionDateTimeServers
  2. You should see several values available in the right pane. Every server will be represented by a number.
  3. To add a new time server, right-click the empty space and choose New > String Value.
    new-1 an error occurred while windows was synchronizing with time.windows.com
  4. Enter the appropriate number as the name, in our case that’s 3 since we already have 3 servers available, and double click it.
  5. In the Value data field enter the server‘s address. Users reported that tick.usno.navy.mil server worked for them, so you can add it if you want.
  6. Click OK to save changes.
    new-2 an error occurred while windows was synchronizing with time.windows.com
  7. Optional: You can add as many servers as you want by following the previous steps. Regarding the servers, you can add any of these:
    • time-a.nist.gov
    • time-b.nist.gov
    • 128.105.37.11
    • europe.pool.ntp.org
    • clock.isc.org
    • north-america.pool.ntp.org
    • time.windows.com
    • time.nist.gov

After you add servers to the registry, simply go to Time and Date settings and choose any of the servers that you added. For more information on how to change a time server, be sure to check Solution 2 for detailed instructions.


8. Change registry values

  1. Open Registry Editor and navigate to the following key in the left pane:
    • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMCurrentControlSetServicesW32TimeConfig
  2. In right pane double click on MaxNegPhaseCorrection and set the Value data to ffffff.
  3. Click OK to save changes.
    config-1
  4. Double click on MaxPosPhaseCorrection and set Value data to ffffff. Click OK to save changes.
    config-2 an error occurred while windows was synchronizing with time.windows.com
  5. Close Registry Editor.

Can’t edit your registry? Take a look at this step-by-step guide and fix the problem in no time.


Users reported that you can fix this problem simply by changing two values in your registry. After doing that, try to synchronize your clock again. Before trying this solution it’s recommended to back up your registry in case anything goes wrong.


FAQ: Learn more about clock syncing in Windows 10

  • Why is clock synchronization important for Windows 10?

Having your Windows 10 device synced with the local time zone is incredibly important for accessing content. If there is a mismatch between the local time and your PC’s time, you might get browsing errors or have issues with certain Windows 10 PC services.

  • Can I sync my time manually?

Yes, you can. However, it is recommended that you let Windows 10 sync your time for you when it is connected to the Internet, so that you may avoid any unfortunate events.

  • What do I need in order for my Windows 10 PC to sync the clock by itself?

All your Windows 10 device needs is a stable Internet connection, and to have the Time Settings set in such a way to allow online synchronization.


An error occurred while Windows was synchronizing with time.windows.com error can prevent your clock from synchronizing, but you can easily solve this problem by changing your time server or by using any other of our solutions.

If you have any more questions or suggestions, feel free to drop them in the comments section below.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in June 2018 and has been since revamped and updated in March 2020 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

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