Ethernet was originally implemented by Xerox in the early 1970s. Because it was successful, DEC, Intel, and Xerox collectively defined a standard for 10Mb ethernet in 1978. This formed the basis for the IEEE 802.3 definition, which was specified in 1985. The following are three major elements of an ethernet network:

  • Packets— Also called frames, these are the units of data that are sent across the network.

  • Hardware— The cables, connectors, and computer circuitry that actually transfers the data between hosts on an ethernet network.

  • CSMA/CD— The network access method that controls the flow of frames across the network.

The two types of ethernet in use today are the original DEC, Intel, and Xerox standard, (also called DIX, named after ...

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