Cons - Connection-oriented Network Services

By: Jesse Miller

At the network layer, the OSI model supports two types of protocols they are Connection oriented network services and connectionless network services.

A connection-oriented network services establishes a virtual circuit for the transmission of data that is active for the entire transmission. All packets belonging to a single transmission are sent, in order, over the same route, thereby allowing a degree of control over the quality of service that would not otherwise be possible. In a CONS environment, a connection must be established between both ends of a transmission before any data may be sent.

At the onset of the transmission, the sending device transmits a request to send packet. If the receiver is available, it returns a ready to receive packet. This exchange alerts the receiver to expect an entire transmission rather than a single packet. No data may be transmitted until both ends have demonstrated readiness.

Once the connection has been made, a single path is chosen and maintained for the entire transmission. A transmission is a series of related data units travelling in one direction and is handled both by the network and the transport layers. Connections for the duration of an entire exchange are handled by the session layer. Packet switching allows transmissions to be split into a number of smaller segments and sent by various routes. If a connection is established, the segments are numbered and sent in sequence by a single route, one right after the other.

A connection-oriented network service follows five general steps they are sender transmits a connection request packet, receiver acknowledges with a connection confirm packet, sender transmits data, sender transmits a disconnect request packet, and receiver acknowledges with disconnect confirm packet. A CONS environment allows a protocol to include comprehensive sequence, error, and flow control. Sequential numbering allows the protocol to ensure that all packets make it to the receiver and that they are received in order. Packets are identifiable and can be acknowledged or retransmitted as necessary. Numbering also allows the use of a sliding window for flow control. All segments of a transmission must be received and acknowledged before a transmission is considered complete and the virtual circuit can be discarded.

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An additional advantage gained by CONS transmission is packet size. Because all packets follow the same path, less protocol control information is needed on subsequent packets.

Connection oriented network service is useful for transmitting viable data.

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