Server Time Gets Reset During System Restart – Problem Article

Target Audience: Advanced User, IT Manager
Article # 9505


After a system restart, some services do not launch as expected. Troubleshooting does not show an obvious cause. However, examination of  the Windows System Event log shows that, for a short period of time, the system’s time does not match the local time. This begins at the time of the restart and may cover a number of events before the system’s time resets to the local time zone.

Situation and Symptoms

  • The time in the Windows System Event log suddenly changes (possibly by several hours) during system startup
  • SQL Services will not start
  • The TkxSvrServer service will start and stop


After a system restart, the server updates its clock from the BIOS. It treats this as the “local time”.  If the BIOS is set for UTC, this will cause the time to jump.

This issue appears in Windows Embedded 8, Windows 7 Service Pack 1 (SP1), Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1, or Windows Embedded Standard 7 SP1.

Many services require authentication with Active Directory before they will launch.  As a general rule, Windows will not authenticate a user or computer if the time difference between the user or computer and the authentication server is greater than around 15 minutes. As a result, the services cannot authenticate the account, and they would not start properly.


One of our customers, David LaFountain, found a solution to this problem.

Apply a DWORD type registry key that is named RealTimeIsUniversal in the following path, and you set the value to 1:



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