From the book lists at Adware Report:

All information current as of 14:25:09 Pacific Time, Monday, 21 February 2005.

Internet Core Protocols : The Definitive Guide

   by Eric A. Hall

    15 March, 2000


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Editorial description(s):
For network administrators, support professionals, and system designers, intimate knowledge of the network protocols that are the foundation of the Internet is crucial. Internet Core Protocols: The Definitive Guide is a superb summary of the nitty-gritty details of the most important Net standards.

This book assumes you have a working knowledge of networks and a basic familiarity with TCP/IP. Unlike the cursory coverage of TCP/IP found in many Internet titles, this presentation includes low-level details that aid in troubleshooting. It also includes a copy of Shomiti Surveyor Lite--a utility for analyzing network traffic. Extensive screen shots of Surveyor Lite also illustrate data fields.

Each protocol is examined closely, using network diagrams and detailed breakdowns of the fields and flags. In addition to TCP, IP and UDP, there is far-reaching discussion of multicasting and error communication protocols, including practical application issues such as caching and timeouts to provide a real-world perspective.

In addition to an education into the particulars of the Net's underpinnings, this book is an excellent reference tool. --Stephen W. Plain

Topics covered: TCP/IP overview, Internet Protocol (IP), Address Resolution Protocol (ARP), Multicasting, Internet Group Management Protocol (IGMP), Internet Control Message Protocol (ICMP), User Datagram Protocol (UDP), and Transmission Control Protocol (TCP).

From Library Journal
Although O'Reilly books are not the best place to learn how to use a technology, they are excellent for polishing its finer points. Ethernet and Internet protocols are difficult by nature, but cascading style sheets and MP3s are much more accessible to beginners. All of these books are recommended for university and large public libraries; Cascading Style Sheets and MP3 will also serve well smaller public libraries.
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Book News, Inc.
Intended to be used by "people that live and breathe TCP/IP," this work deals with the basic building block protocols that provide the networking and transport services that all TCP/IP applications and services use. The material is geared towards troubleshooting networks in an increasingly complicated systems atmosphere. The CD-ROM contains Surveyor Lite (a packet analyzer that runs on Win32 systems) and the texts from the RFCs (Request for Comments) that define how the networks should work.Book News, Inc.®, Portland, OR

Book Info
Covers the core protocols that provide the underpinnings of any IP network: IP, TCP, UDP, ARP, ICMP, and IGMP. Covers the standardization process and IP addressing. Softcover. CD-ROM included.

Book Description
Internet Core Protocols: The Definitive Guide contains all the information system and network administrators need for low-level network debugging. Many network problems can only be debugged by looking at all the bits traveling back and forth on the wire. This guide explains what those bits are and how to interpret them. It thoroughly covers the fundamental protocols in the TCP/IP suite: IP, TCP, UDP, ICMP, ARP (in its many variations), and IGMP. (The companion volume, Internet Application Protocols: The Definitive Guide, provides detailed information about the commonly used application protocols, including HTTP, FTP, DNS, POP3, and many others). This book includes many packet captures, showing you what to look for and how to interpret all the fields. And it covers the the latest developments in real-world IP networking. The CD-ROM contains Shomiti's "Surveyor Lite," a packet analyzer that runs on Win32 systems, plus the original RFCs, for reference. Together, this package includes everything you need to troubleshoot your network.

Reader review(s):

Great introduction to TCP/IP!, September 13, 2000
This book is true to its name as it covers the so-called Internet Core Protocols (TCP/IP, UDP, ARP, ICMP, and IGMP) very well. Chapter 1 is an overview of TCP/IP, Chapter 2 is an introduction to IP, and subsequent chapters describe the other protocols. The final chapter is a very detailed description of TCP. As an end-user who desired to learn more of the "basics" of these protocols, I learned quite a bit about how each protocol works.

Each chapter describes the "inner workings" of each protocol, complete with sections on headers, messages, and so forth. Numerous screen captures help you gain further understanding of how each of these protocols works with each other. Not only is each protocol described well, there are also sections in each chapter on troubleshooting problems.

The appendices describe how the Internet Standardization process, ie how RFC's (Request For Comments) get created and the processes they have to go through to be accepted. I had no idea what a long process it can be.

If you're a System Administrator or someone who needs to learn the "basics" of TCP/IP, this is a great place to start.

Internet Protocols, March 25, 2000
This is a good start on covering internet protocols, but it lacks completeness and up to date information for today's internet service providers. I needed a reference book on all internet protocols. If the book is going to cover internet protocols, it must be current and complete. Future editions , I am sure, will be written with this goal in mind.

Food for a TCP/IP junkie; looking forward to your next book!, June 15, 2000
I can't learn enough about how TCP/IP packets appear at the hex and bit level. Call me crazy. That's what my job in network intrusion detection requires, so I appreciate authors like Richard Stevens and Eric Hall. These folks bring the details of TCP/IP to life, so I can apply that understanding to suspicious traffic. Eric's approach focuses on network monitor traces, nicely complementing Richard's TCPDumps. I would recommend checking O'Reilly's web site for the latest errata, even though none of the errors are enough to detract from this excellent reference work. I am actually more interested in seeing the companion volume, "Internet Application Protocols," as this is where some of the attack action occurs these days. Anyway, this book is in my top ten essential security reading list. Thank you Eric!

TERRIBLE! I've never wanted to send a book back before., February 27, 2001
This addle-headed mishmash was a complete waste of my time. Like a bad auto accident, I couldn't tear myself away- I kept hoping there would be some redeeming value buried in there somewhere. I was ultimately dissapointed as the clearest and most informative sections of the book were lifted wholesale from the relevant RFCs.

The book is organized like a train wreck, and its format promotes bulk over useful content. Much text is obviously cut-and-pasted; whole paragraphs- several times. Beginning on ICMP, continuing through IGMP and then covering TCP and UDP!? You've got to be kidding.

I wasn't even treated to a very in-depth or technical coverage of TCP and performance issues. It was just a cut and paste from the RFCs.

This book is a total disaster. Eric Hall has the chutzpah to plug this waste of time in his .signature; every time I see it, I want to mail him a bill for the time I wasted reading it.

Great on theory, May 29, 2001
I bought this book as a general introduction to networking. It provides great depth over a wide range of topics (TCP, IP, ICMP, UDP, etc). I enjoyed the book quite a lot, mostly for the background that it provides. It has a good overview of what's going on, and comprehensive nuts&bolts for network admins (going into great detail about packet sniffing and various rarely-utilized flags). Be warned, the book does not really discuss any development strategies or tools for using these protocols; it is not oriented towards developers (except insofar as it provides useful background information). Im not really sure how useful this book would be- either you are a network engineer (and you already know this stuff, hopefully), or you aren't (in which case, most of it is probably unnecessary). Fortunately, I didnt buy it because I needed to; I thought that it would be interesting stuff, and this turned out to be the case!

An excellent book for the basic protocols., August 21, 2000
This book, subtitled "An Owner's Manual for the Internet", does a very good work of explaining the core protocols - IP, ICMP, IGMP & multicasting, UDP, and TCP.

Higher level protocols will, apparently, be covered in a future volume. Considering this volume quality, which follows O'Reilly's tradition of high standards, I cant wait for the second volume to come out.

The readable & detailed explanations are accompanied by sample packet decodes (a lite version of the decoding is available on the accompanying CD), make the book an excellent study book for both students and network administrators.

good book but too much repeated stuff, May 8, 2002
Very good presentation and description of core protocols (ip, icmp, igmp udp/tcp, arp) and at the right in-depth level I believe (if you want to get more in-depth, the rfc are there for that).
Anyway the book could be made much better just removing stuff since it contains way too much duplicated info. First there are whole paragraphs repeated exactly the same just a few pages away. I think this can get quite offensive (do you think I'm so dumb that I don't remember?).
And then there are the screenshots which are not very appropriate here since this is not an application review. A well formatted packet decode a'la tcpdump/snoop would be much better since screenshots display lots of useless stuff (menus, toolbars, etc) and for big packets a single screenshot can't fit the whole thing so you have to include two or more of them introducing discontinuities.
Furthermore screenshots are uselessly duplicated throughout the book. For example a simple ip header contains jsut 12 fields so a single screenshot can fit them all, anyway to describe these fields, the same screenshot is duplicated 14 times, from page 59 to page 77, and then a few more times. This happens for all the protocols and each screenshot takes about 66% of a page, so this is a real waste of paper! Often it gets really ridiculous when you have the same screenshot on 2 facing pages so you don't even have to slightly rotate your eyes to find them ;-)

best protocol book for admins, April 4, 2001
...this book isn't a good choice for beginners. For serious network managers and operators though, it's a great book to have for background info and diagnosis. I have been involved with data networks for 15 years (SNA, X.25, DECnet IPX and the rest), and would put this book in the same league as the other classics. The material is very well organized and easy to read, with lots of examples. I highly recommend it.

Excellent Reference for SysAdmins or Newbies, April 21, 2000
I've found the book to be an excellent, well-written reference for the related protocols of the Internet. There is both development background and plenty of information for analyzing and/or troubleshooting your network. Highly recommended!

A good book.., April 29, 2002
This book is good for learning basic knoweledge of internet core protocols, definately not for beginners who don't know what protocols are all about. Sometimes gets a little bit complicated with all the 'sasquaches' etc. (You'll know what i mean if you get and read it..) Even though i liked reading the book i give it 4. (Well ok, maybe 4.5)
If you are into protocols, this is definately the book you should read!

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