When the first computers were built during the second world war, they were expensive and isolated.
However, after about twenty years, as their prices gradually decreased, the first experiments began to connect computers together. In the early 1960s, researchers including Paul Baran, Donald Davies or Joseph Licklider independently published the first papers describing the idea of building computer networks .
Given the cost of computers, sharing them over a long distance was an interesting idea. In the US, the ARPANET
started in 1969 and continued until the mid 1980s [LCCD09]. In France, Louis Pouzin developed the Cyclades
network. Many other research networks were built during the 1970s At the same time,
the telecommunication and computer industries became interested in computer networks. The telecommunication
industry bet on the X25. The computer industry took a completely different approach by designing Local Area
Networks (LAN). Many LAN technologies such as Ethernet or Token Ring were designed at that time. During
the 1980s, the need to interconnect more and more computers led most computer vendors to develop their own
suite of networking protocols. Xerox developed [XNS] , DEC chose DECNet, IBM developed
SNA [McFadyen1976] , Microsoft introduced NetBIOS [Winston2003] , Apple bet on Appletalk.
In the research community, ARPANET was decommissioned and replaced by TCP/IP [LCCD09] and the reference implementation was developed inside BSD Unix. Universities who were already running Unix could thus adopt TCP/IP easily and vendors of Unix workstations such as Sun or Silicon Graphics included TCP/IP in their variant of Unix. In parallel, the ISO, with support from the governments, worked on developing an open Suite of networking protocols. In the end, TCP/IP became the de facto standard that is not only used within the research community. During the 1990s and the early 2000s, the growth of the usage of TCP/IP continued, and today proprietary protocols are seldom used. As shown by the figure below, that provides the estimation of the number of hosts attached to the Internet, the Internet has sustained large growth throughout the last 20+ years.
Recent estimations of the number of hosts attached to the Internet show a continuing growth since 20+ years. However, although the number of hosts attached to the Internet is high, it should be compared to the number of mobile phones that are in use today. More and more of these mobile phones will be connected to the Internet.
Furthermore, thanks to the availability of TCP/IP implementations requiring limited resources such as uIP, we can expect to see a growth of TCP/IP enabled embedded devices.
• Introduction to Computer Networks
• Services and protocols
• The reference models
• The application Layer
• Application-level protocols
• Writing simple networked applications
• The transport layer
• Principles of a reliable transport protocol
• The User Datagram Protocol
• The Transmission Control Protocol
• The network layer
• Internet Protocol
• Routing in IP networks
• The datalink layer and the Local Area Networks
• Principles of Computer Networks
• Medium Access Control
• Datalink layer technologies
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