Direct Communication to the Internet (TCP/IP)

The Internet protocol suite is the set of protocols that implement the protocol stack on which the Internet runs. It is sometimes called the TCP/IP protocol suite, after the two most important protocols in it: the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) and the Internet Protocol (IP), which were also the first two defined.

TCP is a connection-oriented transport protocol that sends data as an unstructured stream of bytes. By using sequence numbers and acknowledgment messages, TCP can provide a sending node with delivery information about packets transmitted to a destination node. Where data has been lost in transit from source to destination, TCP can retransmit the data until either a timeout condition is reached or until successful delivery has been achieved. TCP can also recognize duplicate messages and will discard them appropriately. If the sending computer is transmitting too fast for the receiving computer, TCP can employ flow control mechanisms to slow data transfer. TCP can also communicate delivery information to the upper-layer protocols and applications it supports.

IP is the primary layer 3 protocol in the Internet suite. In addition to internetwork routing, IP provides error reporting and fragmentation and reassembly of information units called datagrams for transmission over networks with different maximum data unit sizes. IP represents the heart of the Internet protocol suite. IP addresses are globally unique, 32-bit numbers assigned by the Network Information Center. Globally unique addresses permit IP networks anywhere in the world to communicate with each other.