Since very few computers exist in isolation, managing networks is an inextricable part of system administration. In fact, in some circles, the designations “system administrator” and “network administrator” are more or less synonymous.
This chapter provides an overview of TCP/IP networking on Unix systems. It begins with a general discussion of TCP/IP concepts and procedures and then covers basic network configuration for client systems, including the variations and quirks of each of our reference operating systems. There are other discussions of network-related topics throughout the remainder of the book, including in-depth treatments of network security issues in Chapter 7 and coverage of administering and configuring network facilities and services in Chapter 8.
For a book-length discussion of TCP/IP networking, consult Craig Hunt’s excellent book, TCP/IP Network Administration (O’Reilly & Associates).