Network Technology Essay

795 words - 4 pages

How does that web page you requested appear on your screen or that email to Aunt Lucy get there so fast and reliably? Well thanks to something called TCP/IP, and the US government who funded the research to develop it, we can communicate across the world in seconds. This amazing feat took years of research and the work of some very smart people in the Department of Defense whose job was to develop reliable and secure communications for the US Military. TCP stands for Transmission Control Protocol which basically is a set of rules or procedures that have been agreed on formally that define how telecommunications devices exchange data.
During this 20 year period ( 1969-1989), a division called DARPA along with the academic community invented packet switching technology that dramatically changed for the better how devices across different operating systems and platforms communicate. Up until then, a Store and Forward Network method was used which loaded a message one at a time with all the other messages waiting after it. Then the message would hop to the next node on the network repeating this until it reached its destination. The smaller messages were held up by the larger messages and one outage along the network made the whole network stalled. This method was very slow and expensive. Their idea was to break the message into parts called packets and each packet could be sent to different nodes over the network where all the packets would reach their correct destination in the correct order in a matter of seconds. The data would pass through mini computers called routers whose primary job it is to direct the message to the next closest or available server. Messages are also forwarded through gateways, a type of router which is really just a mini-computer. The message would have a header with destination IP address as well as sender IP address and packet sequence number. That is where the IP part of TCP/IP comes in. Internet Protocol (I/P) is the set of rules that exist for how packets are sent over the internet from one device to another and is part of the inter/network layer. It uses a device's IP address to forward the packet to the next device, not the device's mac address. A device has two addresses, a MAC address which is assigned by the manufacturer and an...

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