Protocols governing the web

The Internet relies on a number of protocols in order to function properly. A protocol is simply a standard for enabling the connection, communication, and data transfer between two places on a network. Here are some of the key protocols that are used for transferring data across the Internet.

TCP : TCP or Transmission Control Protocol is a standard that defines how to establish and maintain a network conversation via which application programs can exchange data. TCP works with the Internet Protocol (IP), which defines how computers send packets of data to each other. Together, TCP and IP are the basic rules defining the Internet. TCP is a connection-oriented protocol, which means a connection is established and maintained until the application programs at each end have finished exchanging messages.

IP : The Internet Protocol (IP) is the method or protocol by which data is sent from one computer to another on the Internet. Each computer which is known as a host on the Internet has at least one IP address that uniquely identifies it from all other computers on the Internet.

HTTP :  HTTP stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol. It is the standard protocol for transferring web pages and their content across the Internet. When accessing any web page entering http:// in front of the address tells the browser to communicate over HTTP.

HTTPS : HTTPS stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol over Secure Socket Layer. Think of it as a secure version of HTTP. HTTPS is used primarily on web pages that ask you to provide personal or sensitive information such as a password or your credit card details. When we browse a web page using HTTPS, we are using SSL (Secure Sockets Layer). For a website to use HTTPS it needs to have an SSL certificate installed on the server. These are usually issued by a trusted 3rd party, referred to as a Certificate Authority (CA).

FTP : FTP stands for File Transfer Protocol. It is used to transfer files across the Internet. FTP is commonly used by web developers to publish updates to a website, i.e. to upload a new version of the website. Where HTTP is used for displaying the file in your browser, FTP is used simply to transfer the file from one computer to a specified location on another computer. You can use FTP to transfer the files from your computer to a remote computer (such as a web server), or to transfer from the remote computer to your local computer.

UDP : UDP stands for User Datagram Protocol. It is an alternative communications protocol to Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) used primarily for establishing low-latency and loss tolerating connections between applications on the Internet. Both UDP and TCP run on top of the Internet Protocol (IP) and are sometimes referred to as UDP/IP or TCP/IP. Both protocols send short packets of data, called datagrams.

DHCP : DHCP stands for Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol. It is used to provide quick, automatic, and central management for the distribution of IP addresses within a network. DHCP is also used to configure the proper subnet mask, default gateway, and DNS server information on the device.

ARP : ARP stands for Address Resolution Protocol. It is used for mapping an Internet Protocol address (IP address) to a physical machine address that is recognized in the local network.

DNS : DNS or Domain Name System is the way that internet domain names are located and translated into internet protocol (IP) addresses. The domain name system maps the name people use to locate a website to the IP address that a computer uses to locate a website. For example, if someone types TechTarget.com into a web browser, a server behind the scenes will map that name to the IP address 206.19.49.149.

ICMP : Internet control message protocol or ICMP provides management and error reporting to help manage the process of sending data between computers. (Management). This protocol is used to report connection status back to computers that are trying to connect other computers. For example, it may report that a destination host is not reachable.

IMAP : IMAP stands for Internet Message Access Protocol. It is a standard email protocol that stores email messages on a mail server, but allows the end user to view and manipulate the messages as though they were stored locally on the end user's computing device(s). This allows users to organize messages into folders, have multiple client applications know which messages have been read, flag messages for urgency or follow-up and save draft messages on the server.

PPP : Point To Point Protocol is a network protocol that allow data communication between two network entities or points.

POP3 : Post Office Protocol version 3 is used by clients to access an internet mail server to get mail. It is not a transport layer protocol.

SSL : Secure Sockets Layer or SSL is a computer networking protocol for securing connections between network application clients and servers over an insecure network, such as the internet. SSL uses a combination of public key and symmetric key encryption to secure a connection between two machines, typically a web or mail server and a client system, communicating over the internet or another TCP/IP network. SSL provides a mechanism for encrypting and authenticating data sent between processes running on a client and server.




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