Linux Networking Protocols

The Linux environment provides a number of protocols that are intended to create and administer networks, both simple and complex. Networks are the foundations of modern communications, and Linux-based networks account for quite a number of them.

TCP/IP is a layered network protocol first developed by the US Department of Defense for providing a communications bridge between computers of different makes. The protocol essentially aimed to keep the software and hardware portions of networking away from each other so as to avoid any potential conflicts. TCP/IP’s complete focus on interoperability and bridging has made it extremely popular for its focus on usability as opposed to semantics. This protocol is completely integrated into the Linux kernel, and is extremely popular due to its efficiency.

TCP/IPv6 is a modernized upgrade to the original TCP/IP (v4) protocol that gives the old protocol a number of tweaks to make it work in the current day and age. It is also made in a way so as to be future-proof. A major issue with IPv4 has been the dwindling number of IP addresses actually left free now. The massive, phenomenal growth of the internet was unprecedented, and the IPv4 was not expected to be a protocol that could be outdated anytime soon, but it is on the verge of it now. IPv6 will make the routing process a lot more efficient and powerful than before.

IPX/SPX stands for Internet Packet Exchange/Sequenced packet Exchange. It is a set of commercial protocols developed by Novell Inc. It has been used primarily in Novell’s Netware over the last few decades, which in turn is the OS of choice for networking professionals.

AppleTalk Protocol Suite is the networking stack created by Apple Inc. it focuses more on P2P protocols, that allows sharing of printers and files. Any machine can be both client and server at the very same time. Linux offers a complete experience in Appletalk networking, and, coupled with implementations like Netatalk, you can access the necessary printer over PAP.

ISDN: The Linux operating system has ISDN completely integrated into it. Special devices based on this protocol can be used to copy and emulate a modem with just a few commands.

PPP, SLIP, PLIP: PPP stands for point-to-point protocol, SLIP is Serial line IP, and PLIP is a parallel line IP. PPP is most commonly used by individual computer owners to access the internet services. PLIP is geared towards local connections, but allows a quick, economical connection between two devices.

Amateur Radio: The Linux operating system, for all that naysayers have said about it, ends up having a number of new features. One of these would be the Amateur Radio. It is a protocol that is meant to support amateur radio. It offers support to the AX25 protocol too. It provides for both connected and non-connected operation modes. It can even carry other protocols like TCP/IP. The fact that the structure is complicated (as compared to the protocols it carries make it useful in not just the amateur radio environment, but other applications and extensions too.

Linux offers a plethora of choices for every aspect of the operating system, and that applies to its networking capabilities too.

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