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Running Mac OS X Tiger by James Duncan Davidson, Jason Deraleau

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Chapter 11. Networking

Networking has always been easy on the Mac. The original Macintosh shipped with AppleTalk, which made it easy to connect a group of computers and printers. Historically, other systems have had a harder time: using a variety of standards that were sometimes proprietary and that did not always work well together. The rise of the Internet, however, has meant that, for all practical purposes, there is now one primary network standard that all machines use: the suite of protocols based on the Internet Protocol, more commonly known as IP. In the development of Mac OS X, Apple has gone to great lengths to make IP as easy to use as possible, approaching the ease of use of AppleTalk. For the most part, the system will try to autoconfigure itself to work with whatever network is available, making it easy to use in this day of café computing. (Would you like WiFi with your latte?)

This chapter gives a fundamental view of how IP works and how to examine the various networking settings as well as monitor your network from both the command line and the GUI. Also, you’ll see how dial-up networking, virtual private networks (VPNs), and firewalls can be configured.

The Internet Protocol

IP is the dominant network standard in use today because its namesake, the Internet, was successful in connecting the world’s various networks together. IP is built on a set of assumptions that break the problem of networking into a set of layers, as shown in Figure 11-1. Each layer acts independently ...

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