Feb 10, 2019 at 04:06 PM
Informer: YouNet Technologies , from
All information is transmitted across the Internet in small units of data called packets. Software on the sending computer divides a large document into many packets for transmission; software on the receiving computer regroups incoming packets into the original document. Similar to a postcard, each packet has two parts: a packet header specifying the computer to which the packet should be delivered, and a packet payload containing the data being sent. The header also specifies how the data in the packet should be combined with the data in other packets by recording which piece of a document is contained in the packet.
A series of rules known as computer communication protocols specify how packet headers are formed and how packets are processed. The set of protocols used for the Internet is named TCP/IP after the two most important protocols in the set: the Transmission Control Protocol and the Internet Protocol. TCP/IP protocols enable the Internet to automatically detect and correct transmission problems. For example, if any network or device malfunctions, protocols detect the failure and automatically find an alternative path for packets in order to avoid the malfunction. Protocol software also ensures that data arrives complete and intact. If any packets are missing or damaged, protocol software on the receiving computer requests that the source resend them. Only when the data has arrived correctly does the protocol software make it available to the receiving application program, and therefore to the user.
Hardware devices that connect networks in the Internet are called IP routers because they follow the IP protocol when forwarding packets. A router examines the header in each packet that arrives to determine the packet’s destination. The router either delivers the packet to the destination computer across a local network or forwards the packet to another router that is closer to the final destination. Thus, a packet travels from router to router as it passes through the Internet. In some cases, a router can deliver packets across a local area wireless network, allowing desktop and laptop computers to access the Internet without the use of cables or wires. Today’s business and home wireless local area networks (LANs), which operate according to a family of wireless protocols known as Wi-Fi, are fast enough to deliver Internet feeds as quickly as wired LANs.
Increasingly, cell phone and handheld computer users are also accessing the Internet through wireless cellular telephone networks. Such wide area wireless access is much slower than high-capacity dedicated, or broadband, access, or dial-up access. Also, handheld devices, equipped with much smaller screens and displays, are more difficult to use than full-sized computers. But with wide area wireless, users can access the Internet on the go and in places where access is otherwise impossible. Telephone companies are currently developing so-called 3G—for “third generation”—cellular networks that will provide wide area Internet access at DSL-like speeds.
Source: Microsoft student