Computer Networks (2IC10)

Spring 2002/2003

NOTICE: examination results (for text and solution see the ‘Course material’ section at the bottom)

NOTICE: final results are now found at July 02 and August 12. Apparently, exercise 3 in the latter was not well-understood as it was difficult to construct from the book and relied mainly on the discussion in the class. We have compensated for that. In addition, the rule applies:

The practical assignment is graded with insufficient/sufficient/good. Everyone grade of 5 changes into 6 when scoring ‘good’ for the practical.

See also: the onderwijsinformatie for the course 2IC10

Intended for: Computer Science, 3rd year


This year is the first time that the course is tought. We expect to be on a learning curve so it won’t be perfect, unfortunately.

There will be 8 weeks of regular lectures (rather than 9 because of an unfortunate assignment of holidays to mondays). Some parts of the lectures may be used for small exercises which will be given as homework assignments. The course is completed by passing the final examination and doing a practical assignment. The assignment has to be completed before the start of the new term in september and can be done with groups of 2 students. These groups must hand in their own, original work, programmed and reported by themselves. This may sound obvious but we have had some unpleasant surprises lately.

On this site we will maintain the current status of the course in terms of the contents, expected reading, assignments and presented slides.

Time & Location: monday, 9.45-12.30, Matrix 1.44. If the group is too large, we will move to AUD 7. This has been decided: it will be AUD 7 for the remainder of the term.

Examination: The conflicts have been resolved (at least momentarily, 17-6) and the date is again/still Wednesday, July 2, 14.00-17.00; second chance: Tuesday, August 12, 14.00-17.00. The examination is “open book”, meaning that you may bring the course book as well as copies of the slides and that you may inspect these during the examination.

There are questions regarding the exact shape of the exam. Unfortunately, I don’t have enough time to make an example version. However, I consider the following categories of questions.

·         Look at exercises in the book

·         Relatively simple questions regarding network performance (bandwidth, latency etc.)

·         Questions relating to the understanding of

o        protocols [what happens if ...., explain this protocol element, ....]

o        layering [why this here, why again, what’s the difference, what happens if...]

That’s all directions I can give for now. I won’t reply to email about this anymore, sorry.

Week 1: Introduction, Packet communication, Layering – read chapter 1.

Week 2: Layering (continued), Network Architecture, Link Layer – read chapter 3 (partly)

Week 3: Physical communication – read chapters 2 and 4

Week 4: no lecture

Week 5: Basic communication protocols – finish chapter 3, relevant for transport layer as well

Week 6, 7: no lecture

Week 8: Connections, the network layer, chapter 5

Week 9: Routing, chapter 5

Week 10: Transport layer, chapter 6

Week 11: Application protocols


The assignment is due the first day of the next term (September 1, 2003, hand it in to Lukkien). Not making this is failing. There will be no acceptance after this date. You are expected to work in couples. Here is a list of currently known participants and coupling. If you have comments on the exercise, e.g. proposals as to how to improve it and its learning effect you’re welcome to send comments to Boris Cobelens or myself, but keep in mind that the exercise has to remain a modest amount of work. We intend to make a FAQ and when reasonable, we may update the text of the exercise. (Don’t be bothered, you may always base your work on the initial version.) Also, in your report you may propose an alternative design.


J.J. Lukkien

HG 6.72, tel.: 5147


          HG 6.78, tel.: 5010



HG 6.41, tel.: 3719


There is an enormous amount of information available on the internet, including complete courses like ours. Just playing 5 minutes with Google wil bring you more information than is reasonable to list here. For the course we use the following obligatory text.

·         Computer Networks, 4th edition, A.S. Tanenbaum, Prentice-Hall International, 2003, ISBN 0-13—038488-7.

Our slides are mostly based on the slides available from the author through the site of the book. We recommend to use other sources as well in order to have a balanced approach. The following two books are also good introductory material.

·         Computer Networking, a top-down approach featuring the Internet, J.K.Kurose, K.W.Ross, Addison-Wesley, 2001, ISBN 0-201-47711-4.

·         Interconnections, Bridges, Routers, Switches and Internetworking Protocols, 2nd edition, R.Perlman, Addison-Welsey, 1999, ISBN 0-201-63448-1.

Course material

·         The examination of 2-7-2003 and its solution.

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