The network is the computer.TM
—Sun Microsystems, Inc.
Network Organization and Architecture
Sun Microsystems launched a major advertising campaign in the 1980s with the catchy slogan that opens this chapter. A couple decades ago, its pitch was surely more sizzle than steak, but it was like a voice in the wilderness, heralding today’s wired world with the Web at the heart of global commerce. Standalone business computers are now obsolete and irrelevant.
This chapter will introduce you to the vast and complex arena of data communications with a particular focus on the Internet. We will look at architectural models (network protocols) from a historical point of view, a theoretical point of view, and a practical point ...