Networking and Communication

Image credit: Pearson
Schedule 2023-2024
Classes: Thursday at 08:45 - 10:15
Practicals: Thursday at 10:30 - 12:00

Objective (ECTS: 4)

The Internet and computer networks are now ubiquitous and a growing number of computing activities strongly depend on the correct operation of the underlying networks. Many computing applications that are used today would not be possible without networks. The objective of the course is to give an introduction to networking at large, and TCP/IP networks specifically. The course will provide an introduction to current network architectures, application level protocols (e.g., http), transport protocols (TCP/UDP), routing and IP. The course will introduce Medium Access Control techniques as well as quantitative performance measures for networks. The course will also give a first introduction to mathematical concepts of networks.

The course will consist of approx. 28 hours of teaching and 28 hours of practical exercises.

Program overview

  1. Computer Networks and the Internet
    1.1. What is the Internet?
    1.2 The Network Edge
    1.3 The Network Core
    1.4 Performance: Delay, Loss and Throughput in Computer Networks
    1.5 Protocol layers and Their Service Models
    1.6 Networks under attack
    1.7 History of Computer Networking

  2. The Application Layer
    2.1 Principles of Network Applications
    2.2 The Web and HTTP
    2.3 Email
    2.4 The Domain Name Service: DNS
    2.5 Peer-to-Peer File Distribution
    2.6 Video Streaming and Content Distribution Networks
    2.7 Socket Programming: Creating Network Applications

  3. The Transport Layer
    3.1 Introduction and Transport-layer Services
    3.2 Multiplexing and Demultiplexing
    3.3 Connectionless Transport: UDP
    3.4 Principles of Reliable Data Transfer
    3.5 Connection-oriented Transport: TCP
    3.6 Principles of Congestion Control
    3.7 TCP Congestion Control
    3.8 Evolution of Transport Layer Functionality

  4. The Network Layer: the Data Plane
    4.1 Network Layer Overview
    4.2 Whats Inside a Router?
    4.3 The Internet Protocol
    4.4 Generalized Forwarding
    4.5 Middleboxes

  5. The Network Layer: the Control Plane
    5.1 Introduction to the Network-layer control plane
    5.2 Routing Algorithms
    5.3 Intra-AS Routing in the Internet: OSPF
    5.4 Routing Among the ISPs: BGP
    5.5 The SDN Control Plane
    5.6 ICMP: The Internet Control Message Protocol
    5.7 Network Management and SNMP, NETCONF/YANG

  6. The Link Layer
    6.1 Introduction to the Link Layer
    6.2 Error-Detection and -Correction Techniques
    6.3 Multiple Access Links and Protocols
    6.4 Switched Local Area Networks
    6.5 Link Virtualization: A Network as a Link Layer
    6.6 Data Center Networking


Wireshark Labs


  • Final exam / written: 100%.
  • Practicals: bonus points (up to 4 points).
  • Students having failed the course will have to re-sit the final exam at a next exam session.
Ion Turcanu
Ion Turcanu
Research and Technology Associate

My research interests include communications protocols for multi-technology vehicular networks, time-sensitive networking for in-vehicle communications, and next-generation cellular networks.