Unit 4: The Transport Layer (TCP/UDP)
When we talk about networks, we are talking about data transport. The TCP/IP stack provides a TCP/UDP layer that handles the data transport between machines across networks. In this unit, you will learn the TCP and UDP protocols by examining the structure of TCP and UDP segments and identifying how this layer serves as the application layer in the TCP/IP stack.
Each application relies on the transport layer that is described in this unit. It is a key layer in today's networks as it contains all the mechanisms necessary to provide a reliable delivery of data over any unreliable network. First, we will develop a simple reliable transport layer protocol. Then, your textbook links you through the details of the TCP and UDP protocols used in TCP/IP networks. We will also study Stream Control Transmission Protocol (SCTP) and Real Time Transport Protocol (RTP), which are not covered by the textbook. These protocols are the fundamental protocols for modern multimedia applications over the Internet.
Completing this unit should take you approximately 18 hours.