OES 2015sp1 ndsd very slow to start after updates and reboot

OES2015sp1/SLES11sp4 on VMware 6.5
Online updates installed last night - last updated in Nov 2017.
After update install finished - server was rebooted - as required.
After reboot - very slow starting
Stalled for a long time at Executing customized settings after starting the NetIQ eDirectory server…
Then shows:
Starting Novell Storage Services (NSS)
nss: ERROR: required eDirectory(ndsd) is not running. Exiting.
………. ABORTING /sbin/rcnovell-nss ……….

I suspect a time issue.
When server restarts messages log shows UTC time which then reverts to Eastern (-04:00) soon after.
This setup is configured the same as other sites that are running OES11sp2/SLES11sp3 on VMware 5.5 with respect to all time settings - that I can find.

Any thoughts?