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Protocols and layering. Network protocols and software Layered protocol suites The OSI 7 layer model Common network design issues and solutions. The need for protocols. Basic communication hardware can transfer bits from one place to another

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Protocols and layering


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    1. Protocols and layering • Network protocols and software • Layered protocol suites • The OSI 7 layer model • Common network design issues and solutions

    2. The need for protocols • Basic communication hardware can transfer bits from one place to another • Communication software provides a convenient high level interface for application programmers • do not have to deal directly with hardware • can run over different hardware • A set of rules for exchanging messages is a network protocol

    3. Protocol suites • Rather than having a single giant protocol, protocols tend to be structured as suites of specific protocols • design and testing is easier • extension and updating is easier • selection and combination becomes possible

    4. Layering • The most common approach to designing protocol suites • Each layer deals with a different level of abstraction and communicates with the layers above and below through a standard interface • There might be several alternatives for each layer

    5. Example - the OSI 7 layer model • ISO model for standardising all networks • Now 20 years old and woefully out of date • Probably too complex • However, still provides useful terminology and a good general example of layering

    6. The 7 OSI layers

    7. Conceptual path of data

    8. Commercially available stacks

    9. Multiple nested headers • Each layer places information in a header before passing a packet to a lower layer and removes it before passing it to an upper layer

    10. Layering principle • Layer N software on the destination computer must receive exactly the message sent by layer N software on the sending computer

    11. Common networking issues • Sequencing for out-of-order delivery • Sequencing to eliminate duplicate packets • Re-transmitting lost packets • Avoiding replay caused by excessive delay • Flow control to prevent data overrun • Mechanisms to avoid network congestion

    12. Sequencing for out-of-order delivery • Connectionless network with dynamic routing may deliver packets out of order • Transport protocols solve this with sequencing • Each packet is given a sequence number • The receiver notes the number of the last packet that arrived in sequence and stores additional out of order packets • The packets are delivered in sequence to the next layer up

    13. Sequencing to eliminate duplicates • Malfunctioning hardware can produce multiple copies of a packet • Sequence numbers allow duplicates to be detected and discarded

    14. Re-transmitting lost packets • Packet loss is a fundamental problem due to transmission errors • One approach to reliable transmission involves positive acknowledgements • sender transmits and starts a timer • receiver receives and acknowledges • on time-out the sender transmits again • the receiver must watch out for duplicates • limit number of attempts before giving up

    15. Avoiding replay caused by delay • A duplicate packet might turn up in a later session (e.g., if it was queued in a switch for a long time) • May be confused with a packet from the later session that uses the same sequence number • Solution is to include a session identifier in the packet

    16. Flow control to prevent overrun • Data overrun occurs when the sender sends faster than the receiver can receive • Simple solution is to acknowledge each packet before sending the next (“stop and go”) • However, this can be wasteful of bandwidth • capacity = 2 Mbps, packet size = 1000 octets, delay = 50 ms • sender has to wait 100 ms before sending next packet • data rate is 1000 octets every 100 ms = 80000 bps = 4% of available capacity

    17. Sliding window protocols • Sender and receiver agree a window size (number of packets) • Initially a whole window is sent • After that, each packet is acknowledged and then another can be sent

    18. Tw = Tg x W

    19. Congestion • Congestion arises due to too much traffic and/or bottlenecks in the network • Limited storage in switches means that packets get dropped

    20. Dealing with congestion • Detecting congestion • switches can inform senders • packet loss can be used as a measure of congestion • Solution is rate control

    21. The art of protocol design • The devil is in the detail • small changes in design can have drastic effects • mechanisms can interact in complex and unexpected ways