TCP/IP first step ( First-Step Series)


Your first step into the world of TCP/IP

  • No TCP/IP experience required
  • Includes clear and easily understood explanations
  • Makes learning easy

Your first step to ...

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TCP/IP First-Step

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Your first step into the world of TCP/IP

  • No TCP/IP experience required
  • Includes clear and easily understood explanations
  • Makes learning easy

Your first step to understanding TCP/IP begins here!

  • Learn TCP/IP basics
  • Discover the power of TCP/IP components and subcomponents
  • Use hands-on activities to understand TCP/IP
  • Benefit from examples that illustrate the power of TCP/IP

Welcome to the world of TCP/IP!

TCP/IP is the world’s de facto communications protocol. It is the official protocol of the Internet and, consequently, has become the predominant communications protocol suite in many private networks and internetworks.

No TCP/IP experience needed!

TCP/IP First-Step explores TCP/IP concepts in a reader-friendly manner that assumes no previous experience. Learn about packetized data transfer, open networking, reference models, and standards bodies. Understand the architecture of the TCP/IP protocol suite and learn about its components, functions, and respective uses. TCP/IP First-Step helps you understand TCP/IP’s role in the network.

Learn more about the First-Step Series at

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781587201080
  • Publisher: Cisco Press
  • Publication date: 12/28/2004
  • Series: First-Step Series
  • Pages: 432
  • Sales rank: 1,423,718
  • Product dimensions: 7.30 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Mark A. Sportack has worked in the information technology industry for more than 20 years. Mark has written numerous books on data networking and teaches graduate classes on networking and data communications at Syracuse University. Mark is currently the chief information officer at Pitney Hardin, LLP.

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Table of Contents


1. TCP/IP: The Official Protocol of the Internet!

What Is TCP/IP?

Finding TCP/IP's Roots.

Enabling the Internet's Success.

The Abilities and Limitations of TCP/IP.

TCP/IP's Top Five Critical Functions.

What It Can't Do.

Chapter Summary.

Chapter Review Questions.

2. What Has TCP/IP Done for Me Lately?

Business and Pleasure?

At Play.

At Work.

What's the Secret?

Open Standards.

Generalizing to See the Patterns.

The Need for Reliable Communications.

The Need for Timely Communications.

Chapter Summary.

Chapter Review Questions.

3. The Quest for Freedom of Choice.

Open or Closed?

The Case for Closed Technologies.

The Case for Open Technologies.

How Do You Not Keep a Secret?

Open Architectures Equals Open Standards.

Reference Models: Keeping Things Organized.

Speaking of Political Committees...




Layers of Layered Standards.

OSI Reference Model.

Using the OSI Reference Model.

What It Looks Like.

What It Really Does.


Getting a Jump on Emerging Standards.

Using Open Standards to Create Proprietary Products.

Making Sense of the Chaos.

Chapter Summary.

Chapter Review Questions.

4. TCP/IP: The Networking Protocol That Changed the World.

The Official Protocol of the Internet.

Groups of Functions.

Inside the Tool Box.

Tools for Users.

Tools for Applications.

Tools for the Network.

The Big Picture.

Dissecting TCP/IP.

Process/Application Layer.

Host-to-Host Layer.

Internet Layer.

Network Access Layer.

Chapter Summary.

Chapter Review Questions.


5. Peeking Under the Covers.

Tools of the Trade.

TCP's Functional Requirements.



A Closer Look at Port Numbers.

Well-Known Port Numbers.

Registered Port Numbers.

Private and Dynamic Port Numbers.

Chapter Summary.

Chapter Review Questions.

6. Pushing the Envelope.

The Life of a Packet.

Stage 1: Wrap It Up.

Stage 2: Pass It On.

Stage 3: Take It Away.

The Numbers Game.

Finding Your IP Address.

Decimal Numbers.

Binary Numbers.

The Architecture of an IP Address.

The Real Deal.

User-Friendly IP Addresses.

Learning to Count All Over Again.

Using IP Addresses.

How Can You Tell a Host Address from a Network Address?

Chapter Summary.

Chapter Review Questions.

7. More Fun with IP Addresses.

Subdivision: It's Not Just for Real Estate.

The Need to Subdivide.

Cut It Up!

Subnetting a Network.

Where's the Subnet Address?

Checking the Math.

Staring at the Bits.

Leaving Room for the Network.

The Benefits and Drawbacks of Subnetting.

Mystery Behind the Mask.

Decimal Masks.

Network Masks.

Subnet Masks.

Two Types of Subnets.

Chapter Summary.

Chapter Review Questions.

8. Guaranteed Delivery: Your Package Will Get Delivered...Eventually!

Reliability and Networking.

Communication Is the Key.

Six Little Flags, One Great Adventure.

Communicating in a Crowd.

Communicating in a Network.

Multitasking with TCP.

Chapter Summary.

Chapter Review Questions.

9. Best-Effort Delivery: It's Now or Never!

User Datagram Protocol.

What Do You Mean, Best Effort?

Yeah, but What's It Good For?

Video Varieties.

Sound Options.

It Gets a Little More Complicated.

UDP-In Action!

The View from the Source.

The View from the Destination.

UDP Port Numbers.

Chapter Summary.

Chapter Review Questions.


10. Special Delivery for Special Messages.

ICMP: A Protocol for System Messages.

The Architecture.

Fields and Functions.

Types of Messages.

Using ICMP.



Chapter Summary.

Chapter Review Questions.

11. How Do I Get There from Here?

Routers Route!

What Is a Router?

What Does a Router Do?

How Does That Work?

Calculating Routes.

Measuring Distances.

Measuring Quality of the Connections.

Applying Rules.

Chapter Summary.

Chapter Review Questions.


12. Connecting to TCP/IP Networks.

Anatomy of a Local-Area Network.

Wire-Based Networks.

Wireless Networks.

Configuring a Network Connection.

Laptop Versus Desktop Computers.

Connecting to a Wire-Based Network.

Connecting to a Wireless Network.

Chapter Summary.

Chapter Review Questions.

13. Smiling and Dialing.

What, Exactly, Is the Internet?

All ISPs Are Not Created Equal.

Picking an ISP.

Picking an Access Technology.

More Power!

What's the Catch?

What's the Story with Dial-Up Connections?

How Does It Work?

Dial-Up Today.

Configuring a Dial-Up Connection.

Tracking Down the Wizard.

Chapter Summary.

Chapter Review Questions.

14. Taking the Next Step.

Information, Please!

Checking Your Configuration.

Internet's Yellow Pages.

TCP/IP's Bugshooting Tools.

Map It Out.

Show Me the Numbers.

Tracking Down Problems Beyond Your Control.

Back to ping.

Tracing the Route.

Chapter Summary.

Chapter Review Questions.


Chapter Review Answers.


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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 29, 2005

    Excellent book for beginners

    ENGLISH. This is my first experience with one of the books of the ¿First-Step¿ series and resulted in something that I will recommend to my students and to anybody who would like to begin to study networking technology. The style of the book is almost narrative, therefore the complicated concepts about TCP/IP are explained in an easy way and using analogies whenever is possible. The main objective of the book is to present the TCP/IP protocol stack, the layers that form it, to describe the functions that are carried out by each layer, and to explain why they are necessary for the communication process, but the author doesn¿t stop there, and the book also includes something about the origin and history of TCP/IP, the organizations that regulate and administer the development of networking technologies, routing and routing protocols, Ethernet and the Physical Layer; and tools for network troubleshooting. Obviously the most extensive treatment is given to the most important protocols: TCP (Transport Control Protocol), UDP (User Datagram Protocol) and IP (Internet Protocol) and I consider this the most valuable section of the book, because the function of each protocol, the way it does that function and the description of the information contain by the headers added to the messages, all are explained using a language that facilitates understanding; and while talking about how the TCP/IP protocol stack works, at the same time the author is talking about how the whole network communication is achieved, therefore, by reading the book, the reader is simultaneously learning about TCP/IP and also about how computer networks work and the physical devices that conform them. There are 2 chapters dedicated to the Windows XP configuration to connect a computer to a wired network, a wireless network, and through a modem using a dial-up connection. I consider these chapters out of place in this book, because if someone wants to know about this subject, I think she or he will go first to a book with the words ¿Windows XP¿ in its title, than to a book with the words ¿TCP/IP¿; I think books on Windows XP do a good job regarding this subject, and for me it should have been enough to have said that it is necessary to configure the TCP/IP protocol on the operating system, but not to dedicate 2 chapters to show how to do it. Instead I would have preferred some mentioning about IPv6 (the new version of the IP protocol) or at least some warning about the future of IP and the implications of moving to the new version. Anyway and without any doubt, this is a great book that fulfills its goal. Based on my experience as a Cisco Netacad Instructor, this is a book that I recommend very much to anybody that has just started to study about networking technology or those who are studying for the CCNA certification. I enjoyed the reading and only took me about 8 hours to read the entire book. I think that you will also enjoy it. ******************** *********************** ******************** *********************** ******************** *********************** ******************** SPANISH. Esta es mi primera experiencia con uno de los libros de la serie ¿First-Step¿ y resultó en algo que recomendaré a mis estudiantes y a cualquiera que se inicie en el estudio de la tecnología de redes. El estilo en que está escrito el libro es casi narrativo, así que los conceptos complicados acerca de TCP/IP son explicados de modo muy sencillo y haciendo uso de analogías cada vez que es posible. El objetivo principal del libro es presentar el stack de protocolos TCP/IP, las capas que lo componen, describir las funciones que se realizan en cada capa, y explicar porqué son necesarias al proceso de comunicación, pero el autor no se detiene ahí, y el libro también incluye algo sobre el origen e historia de TCP/IP, las organizaciones que regulan y administran el desarrollo de las tecnologías de redes, ruteo y protocolos de ruteo; Ethernet y la capa físi

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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