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Palm OS Network Programming by Greg Winton

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Chapter 5. A Brief Tour of the Net Library

There are two layers to the Net Library: the network protocol stack and the application programming interface. The protocol stack is on the bottom, handling the nitty gritty details of network services. The programming interface sits on top, providing a way for your application to take advantage of these services. This architecture, and the details of its implementation, are the result of years of research and development on a wide variety of platforms. As a developer, you benefit from all this work. Understanding this work and the reasons behind the design decisions will help you write more efficient and stable network code.

In this chapter, we explore the Net Library from a distance. Don’t worry, we dive into the details of Palm Network Programming in Chapter 6. If you’re already an expert (or just really impatient), feel free to jump on ahead. We’ll catch up. But if you persevere through this chapter, you’ll be rewarded with a view of the architectural and functional beauty of the Net Library.

The Design of the Net Library

The Net Library provides networking services for the Palm OS. The standard implementation supports TCP and UDP over an IP network. In this section, we explore the architecture and design of the external interface presented to the networking applications, as well as the internal system that provides the networking functionality.

Architecture

The Network Library can be divided into two parts: the API and the protocol ...

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