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Windows Server® 2008 TCP/IP Protocols and Services by Joseph Davies

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TCP Options

Just like options in the IP header extend IP functionality, TCP options extend TCP functionality. There are a variety of defined TCP options that are used for negotiating maximum segment sizes, window scaling factors, performing selective acknowledgments, recording timestamps, and providing padding for 4-byte boundaries. A node is not required to support all TCP options; however, the support for processing TCP options is required. The presence of TCP options is indicated by a Data Offset field with a value greater than 5 (0x5) (the TCP header is longer than 20 bytes).

A TCP option is either a single byte or multiple bytes. For multiple-byte options, the TCP option is in type-length-value format, where the length is the length in bytes ...

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