CPSC 612: Applied Networks and Distributed Processing
Spring Semester 2001


Instructor Info

Instructor :Dr.  Michael E. Thomadakis
Office : Room 315B, H.R. Bright Building  [Only place to visit for O.H.]
Office Hrs : MWF 15:00--16:00 or by appointment.
Email :miket@cs.tamu.edu
Tel : (979) 845-3907 (W)
URL : www.cs.tamu.edu/faculty/miket
URL : www.cs.tamu.edu/faculty/bettati
Class Hrs : MWF 10:20--11:10am
Classroom : 126, HRBB (Computer Science Building)
TA : Guangtong Cao
Office : 518
Office Hrs :MW 1:00 - 4:00 PM, Tuesday 10:00 - 12:00 AM, other times by appointment
Email : caogt@neo.tamu.edu  OR   g0c7670@cs.tamu.edu
Tel : 458-3257
Index [Course Info]   [Current Announcements]   [Assignments]   [Instructional Notes]   [Midterm #1 Material]   [Final Material]   [Useful Links]  

Course Info

CPSC 612 Syllabus

Course Topics  Course Topics in detail

Textbooks Lectures will be based on the following textbooks

  • (Required) [GaWi2000] Alberto Leon-Garcia and Indra Widjaja, Communication Networks: Fundamental Concepts and Key Architectures, First Edition, McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc., 2000, ISBN 0-07-022839-6. [This text provides a detailed discussion on the all layers of the ISO and TCP/IP models, of Internetworking and of modern technology.]
  • (Recommended) [RSt1997] W. Richard Stevens, Unix Network Programming, 2nd Edition, Volume 1; Networking APIs: Sockets and XTI, Prentice Hall, October 1997, ISBN 013490012X. [This is the reference for UNIX based programming.]

Reference Textbooks We will occasionally use material from the following classics on network programming and computer networks.

  • [CN-SA] Larry Peterson and Bruce Davie, Computer Networks: A Systems Approach, Second Edition, Morgan Kaufmann Publishers (Academic Press inprint), 2000. [This text provides a very clear discussion on the upper layers of the ISO and TCP/IP models and of Internetworking.]
  • [DCC] William Stallings, Data and Computer Communications, 6th Edition, Prentice Hall, 1999. [This text discusses very concisely the lower three layers of the ISO model and the IP Module on TCP/IP stack.]
  • W. Richard Stevens, TCP/IP Illustrated, Volume 1: The Protocols, Addison-Wesley, January 1994, ISBN 020163346. [This good text presents in detail the way the TCP/IP stack operates.]
  • W. Richard Stevens, TCP/IP Illustrated, Volume 2: The Implementation, Addison-Wesley, January 1995, ISBN 020163354X. [A very detailed introduction to the TCP/IP internals of the 4.4BSD Unix (the TCP/IP reference implementation).]
  • W. Richard Stevens, Advanced Programming in the UNIX Environment, Addison-Wesley, May 1992, ISBN 0201563177. [The predecessor of [RSt1997]]
  • Jean Walrand, Communications Networks: A First Course, Second Edition, McGraw-Hill, 1998. [A very concise introduction to networking technologies.]
  • Andrew S. Tanenbaum, Computer Networks, Third Edition, Prentice Hall, March 1996, ISBN 0133499456.

Supplemental Textbooks These are some classics on stochastic analysis

  • Erhan Çinlar, Introduction to Stochastic Processes, Prentice-Hall, Inc., Englewood Cliffs, NJ, 1975. [A Classic. Concise introduction to stochastic processes and queuing theory.]
  • Leonard Kleinrock, Queuing Systems Volume I: Theory, John Wiley & Sons, 1975. [A relatively comprehensive introduction to queuing theory.]
  • Leonard Kleinrock, Queuing Systems Volume II: Computer Applications, John Wiley & Sons, 1976. [Applications of queuing theory to computers and communications.]
Other Reading Material A number of hand-outs in the form of papers, manuals or class-notes will be distributed to students during the course.

Catalog Course Description Basic hardware/software, architectural components for computer communications; computer networks, switching, routing, protocols and security; multiprocessing and distributed processing; interfacing operating systems and networks; case studies of existing networks and network architectures. Prerequisite: CPSC 410.

Scholastic Dishonesty Scholastic Dishonesty (SD) is one of the biggest enemies of education, with far graver consequences, some times, than the lack of education or the lack of intelectual capabilities. Universities are environments which are meant to promote the discovery or elicitation of truth based on sound reasoning and scientific procedures. SD operates in direct opposition to all principles of discovering and disseminating scientific truth. This is a basic fact of life and people with common sense understand this clearly.

SD of any form or extend will not be tolerated. All types of assignments will routinely be checked for similarities and authentic originality. Assignments found to be substantially similar with other pieces of work will receive zero marks, automatically. The Instructor reserves the right to apply all punitive measures provided by admistrative and academic regulations of Texas A&M University.

Reference:  Scholastic Dishonesty

Attendance Policy It is strongly recommended that you attend class regularly. Students are responsible for material discussed in the lectures, which may not be covered in the textbook or the lecture transparencies. Assignments and other class work, can be made up, when a University sanctioned excuse is provided (see Student's Rules). Unexcused work can not be made up under any circumstances.

Official Announcements This site is the place where information on the course, its policies, material, assignments, etc., are officially announced. The contents of this site are updated frequently with new or additional information on the lectures, assignments and exams. Check back often. Inquire with your TA or the Instructor on course related issues. Programming problems, troubleshooting and debugging should be referred to the TAs, in general.

Course newsgroup tamu.classes.cpsc612. Post your questions in the newsgroup and check it often for announcements.


Current Announcements



1  Assignment Guidelines

2  Current Assignments

3  Term Project


Instructional Notes

1  Network and Pthread Programming on Unix and Other Platforms

2  Transparencies

Midterm 1

Material for Midterm #1

  • Date and Place Midterm #1 will be held on Monday, 03-19-2001, in our classroom. It is going to be 50 minutes in duration.

  • Instructions  The exam is closed-book. You are allowed to use one sheet of handwritten notes, two-sided. The sheet is limited to a size of 5.5' X 8.5', which is half the size of a letter-sized sheet.

    Start from the notes on the web and then move to the textbook chapters below. The questions will be related to the material we covered in class, the HW assignments and the mini-projects. No T/F or multiple-choice. Good luck!

  • Topics to be Covered in Midterm #1
    1. Chapter 1
    2. Chapter 2
    3. Chapter 3 (skim 3.3, 3.4, 3.6, 3.7.4, [no 3.7.5]), (No 3.8.7, 3.8.8)
    4. Chapter 4 Section 4.1: Only what is FDM, TDM, (skim the T1 stuff)
    5. Chapter 5 5.1, 5.2, 5.3.1, 5.4. (Flow Control: Stop-and-Wait, Sliding Window; Error-Detection and Correction (with retransmission) ARQs: Stop-and-Wait, Go-back-N, Selective-Repeat.
  • Material
    for the

    Material for the Final

  • The final will be held on Tuesday, 05-08-2001, at 8:00--10:00AM in the regular classroom.

  • Instructions  The exam is closed-book. You are allowed to use one sheet of handwritten notes, two-sided. The sheet is limited to a size of 5.5' X 8.5', which is half the size of a letter-sized sheet.

    Start from the notes on the web and then move to the textbook chapters below. The questions will be related to the material we covered in class, the HW assignments and the mini-projects. No T/F or multiple-choice. Good luck!

  • Topics for the Final
      Main Textbook [GaVi]
    1. Chapter 6 entire chapter, (skim 6.5)
    2. Chapter 7 7.1 -- 7.4, inclusive
    3. Chapter 8 8.1 -- 8.7, (skim 8.6)
    4. Previous Material A small number of topics will concern material from Mid #1. You should also be prepared to provide technical details of your term project and any of the mini-projects.
      Network Programming and Host Issues
    1. POSIX (Berkeley) Sockets  Understand the sequence of steps in order to establish passive (server) and active (client) socket connections. Basic system calls relating to sockets [see the POSIX socket resources] (socket(), bind(), connect(), bind()). Orderly release (close) of a socket by local or remote site (shutdown(), close()) and detection of socket close intitiated by the other side. Socket I/O functions (read(), write(), send(), recv(), sendto(), recvfrom()).
    2. Network Programming  M-client--N-server models. Iterative and Concurrent Servers: basics; multi-threaded, hybrids. Trade-off issues, cost of each model.
    3. Timestamping  Basic timestamping techniques for performance measurements.
    4. UNIX techniques   starting new processes (fork()) and new program images (exec()). Process groups, job-control. Unix SIGNAL models. Inheritance of parent process's resources (file-descriptors) by child processes. Unix I/O Models (blocking, non-blocking, SIGnal driven, asynchronous). Synchronous I/O multiplexing (select()).
    5. Host Design Issues  Basic Host Architecture and bottlenecks.
  • Useful

    Useful Links

    Links to Centers and Institutes performing research and proposing standards on computer communications networking.

    Seminars in Networking Department of Computer Science, Texas A&M University. These seminars cover topics in general networking, as well as, in mobile computing.

    The Internet Engineering Task Force

    LBNL Network Research Group

    CAIDA The Cooperative Association for Internet Data Analysis. Wealth of information on Internet Measurements and Monitoring Tools.

    ACIRI is an AT&T-funded research institute at ICSI in Berkeley, California.

    ACM Special Interest Group on Data Communication.

    Merit is a large ISP with many contributions to routing software.

    Open Group, Networking Services (XNS), Issue 5.2 XNS Issue 5.2 defines the industry-standard Open Systems interfaces to communications services, including IPv6.

    The IPv6 Information Page, and the IPv6 Related Specifications.

    RSVP the Resource Reservation Protocol site at Information Sciences Institute, CA.

    RFC the full collection of Internet RFCs, FYI the informational documents for the Internet, and STD the essential RFCs.

    The ATM Forum

    ANA the Advanced Network Architecture group at MIT.

    CAIRN Testbed Operations Center.

    CPSC 612 Applied Networks and Distributed Processing