Networking with TCP/IP

Linux supports a full implementation of the Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) networking protocols. TCP/IP has become the most successful mechanism for networking computers worldwide. With Linux and an Ethernet card, you can network your machine to a local area network (LAN) or (with the proper network connections) to the Internet—the worldwide TCP/IP network.

Hooking up a small LAN of Unix machines is easy. It simply requires an Ethernet controller in each machine and the appropriate Ethernet cables and other hardware. Or if your business or university provides access to the Internet, you can easily add your Linux machine to this network.

Linux also supports Serial Line Internet Protocol (SLIP ) and Point-to-Point Protocol (PPP ). SLIP and PPP allow you to have dial-up Internet access using a modem. If your business or university provides SLIP or PPP access, you can dial in to the SLIP or PPP server and put your machine on the Internet over the phone line. Alternatively, if your Linux machine also has Ethernet access to the Internet, you can configure it as a SLIP or PPP server.

In the following sections, we won’t mention SLIP anymore because nowadays most people use PPP.

Besides the Linux Network Administrator’s Guide, the various HOWTOs at contain lots of information about how to set up particular aspects of networking, including how to deal with unruly hardware like some modems. ...

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