TCP/IP is the most used network protocol nowadays. In this tutorial Hardware Secrets will explain how it works in a very easy to follow language.
So, what is a network protocol anyway? Protocol is like a language used to make two computers to talk to each other. Like in real world, if they are not talking the same language, they cannot communicate.
Before going further, we recommend you to read our tutorial The OSI Reference Model for Network Protocols, which is a primer for understanding how network protocols work. Consider the present tutorial as a sequel to our OSI Reference Model tutorial.
TCP/IP is not really a protocol, but a set of protocols – a protocol stack, as it is most commonly called. Its name, for example, already refers to two different protocols, TCP (Transmission Control Protocol) and IP (Internet Protocol). There are several other protocols related to TCP/IP like FTP, HTTP, SMTP and UDP – just to name a few. Don’t worry about this for now; we will explain all you need to know about them later.