Lucidly Written, Ideal for exam preparation and To gain sound basics I brought this when i had 3 months to prepare for GATE exams, you can cover a lot of ground if you give a decent amount of time per topic, say about 15 mins to a page and 1 hr for a topic. Once done you would be able to gain much need competence to solve questions. This is one of the lovely technical books out there, if you love to soak in nuances of networks buy this one. --Bharathram Nov 15, 2013
Computer Networks are a wide and fastly growing subject. Finding a textbook that covers all of the topics in a detailed way is simply impossible. Perhaps for this reason good textbook authors have, in a probably implicit way, established two possible approaches: the Engineers' and the (mostly Software) Developers'. Once again Tanenbaum has done a great job with this book (and its updated-more-than-revised 4th edition), which takes the former approach. The book presents general issues and impacts (on technology as well on the society) of Computer Networks in the first chapter, and then move in a detailed exposition of the lower layers of a general network architecture (similar to the OSI one). The great value of the books stems from the clarity and thoroughness of the exposition. Indeed, it presents all of the most known technologies and algorithms (both today's and historical) from physical mediums to algorithms for routing, congestion and flow control and so on. Plenty of details are provided at the level of mathematical performance analysis for some algorithms like those presented in the Medium Access Sublayer chapter (e.g. ALOHA and CSMAs). The "tone" of prof. Tanenbaum is an added values as well. He rarely becomes boring and sometimes results hilarious in his comments of famous anecdotes that led to the born of this technology or that algorithm (have you ever heard how automatic phone calls switching was born ?). I never underestimate the value of an easy exposition, as sometimes studying is already hard enough to cope also with a overwhelmingly boring book. Enough for the lower layers/protocols so far. About the upper ones the book actually does not spend too much emphasis on network applications nor on the high level tools for building network applications. --By G. Avvinti on February 14, 2003
First of all, the fourth edition was published in 2002, so all reviews prior to that date are about a previous edition of this book. This is a classic textbook on computer networking from an academic viewpoint. Do not expect to ever be able to fix a specific network problem or become a CCNE by reading this book. However, doing either of those tasks rests on a firm foundation of the theory found in this book. From the beginning, the author points out that there is some confusion about what a computer network is - a collection of autonomous computers connected by a single technology. He then points out that actually neither the world wide web nor the internet are computer networks. The book goes on to explain networks in terms of a 5 layer system rather than the classic 7 layer OSI model, which is the same as in the previous edition. However, much has been added and much deleted based on the rapidly changing technology involved. For example, the chapter on the physical layer has been completely rewritten. The previous edition focused that chapter on ISDN, ATM and cellular radio. The current edition omits references to that technology and discusses the mobile telephone system and cable television instead. As would be expected, the other section of the book that had the biggest revision was the chapter on the application layer. Gone is the obsolete subject of USENET news, multimedia has changed completely, and the network security section now has its own chapter due to the importance that field has taken on. Finally, the chapter on further reading, which had good comments to go with the suggested reading, was always one of my favorites because it told you why you should read something in addition to showing you what to read, plus the bibliography is divided by network layer. --By calvinnme on January 24, 2006
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From the Back Cover
The world's leading introduction to networking―fully updated for tomorrow's key technologies.
Computer Networks, Fourth Edition is the ideal introduction to today's networks―and tomorrow's. This classic best seller has been thoroughly updated to reflect the newest and most important networking technologies with a special emphasis on wireless networking, including 802.11, Bluetooth, broadband wireless, ad hoc networks, i-mode, and WAP. But fixed networks have not been ignored either with coverage of ADSL, gigabit Ethernet, peer-to-peer networks, NAT, and MPLS. And there is lots of new material on applications, including over 60 pages on the Web, plus Internet radio, voice over IP, and video on demand.Finally, the coverage of network security has been revised and expanded to fill an entire chapter.
Author, educator, and researcher Andrew S. Tanenbaum, winner of the ACM Karl V. Karlstrom Outstanding Educator Award, carefully explains how networks work on the inside, from underlying hardware at the physical layer up through the top-level application layer. Tanenbaum covers all this and more:
- Physical layer (e.g., copper, fiber, wireless, satellites, and Internet over cable)
- Data link layer (e.g., protocol principles, protocol verification, HDLC, and PPP)
- MAC Sublayer (e.g., gigabit Ethernet, 802.11, broadband wireless, and switching)
- Network layer (e.g., routing algorithms, congestion control, QoS, IPv4, and IPv6)
- Transport layer (e.g., socket programming, UDP, TCP, RTP, and network performance)
- Application layer (e.g., e-mail, the Web, PHP, wireless Web, MP3, and streaming audio)
- Network security (e.g., AES, RSA, quantum cryptography, IPsec, and Web security)
The book gives detailed descriptions of the principles associated with each layer and presents many examples drawn from the Internet and wireless networks.
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