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Update the Server Time and Change When System Crons are Ran

Click Here to skip to how to set the System Cron Times.

So the server’s time is set to UTC by default. If you are unsure what that is, it’s 5 hours a head of EST. This is important when looking through logs, or if you are wondering why the your emails are reporting the wrong time, or if you want to set the system crons to run when the server has the least amount of traffic, you might want to set the server time to your local time.

To do this you will need to log into the WHM, here is a link on how to access the WHM Click Here.

Once you are in the WHM search for “time” in the search box in the top left of the screen. The search results will appear directly under the search box.

system time 1

Once you have clicked on “Server Time” You will see this:

system time 2

As you can see the current time is: Wed Nov 12 01:52:02 UTC 2014 and you see that big UTC in there, that is the time zone that the server is set to. Under that you see Configure Timezone, which is also set to UTC. So click on the drop down and you will see a ton of different options. It is organized by Continent/City so if you wanted EST you would use America/New_York, if you want CST you can use America/Chicago, and so on.

NOTE: Each timezone is going to have a bunch of cities that are in the timezones, so you can select the city that is nearest you. Though it doesn’t really matter so long as it is in your timezone.

Once you have selected the correct timezone select that big blue button that says “Change TimeZone.” You will then get a message that says: Local timezone has been set to America/Denver. Except it will have your timezone, not necessarily America/Denver.

You then need to go back to Server Time, so just click on it on the left hand menu. Now you need to click the other big blue button: Sync Time with Time Server. And you will see something like this: rdate: [rdate.cpanel.net] Tue Nov 11 19:16:58 2014. Congratulations your server is now running your local time!!!

Change System Cron Times

Now if you want to set when your backups and update scripts are ran read here. The reason why you want to set the time is because these scripts can be taxing on the server and if ran at the wrong time might cause your server to go slow, or even crash if the load is high from traffic already. You also want to make sure that the backup cron runs at a different time than the update cron.

Here is an excerpt from the cron Wikipedia page: The software utility Cron is a time-based job scheduler in Unix-like computer operating systems. People who set up and maintain software environments use cron to schedule jobs (commands or shell scripts) to run periodically at fixed times, dates, or intervals. If you want more information on crons Click Here

In the WHM in the search box type in: cron, and click on: Configure cPanel Cron Jobs. Once on that page you will see three different entries: Command: upcp (The updater script), Command: backup (the non-default backup option), and Command: cpbackup (the default backup option). So by default the Command: backup is turned off, so you don’t need to worry about that one. But the other two are on, and you should make sure that they are running at the best time for you.

cron 1

You will see the time options on my server for the upcp command are set to run every day at 1:01AM. The times are set on a 24 hour clock, so if you wanted it to run at midnight you would use: 24 for the hour.

So like I said before you will want to make sure that they are running at different times. I like to give about two hours between upcp and the backups. That way they have plenty of time to run and won’t overlap and cause problems with the server. Once you have updated the time on one of the commands click the save button. When you do you will get a green bar on top of the screen saying something like: Your cron entry for “upcp” has been successfully saved. Then make changes to the other command and save it. You are now all done and have made sure that the commands won’t run during crucial times.

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