By: Er.Amit Mahajan

A switched network consists of a series of interlinked nodes,called switches. They are capable of creating temporary connections between two or more devices linked to the switch but not to each other.

Three methods of switching:
Circuit switching Packet switching Message switching

Circuit switching
It creates a direct physical connection between two devices such as phones or computer. It is mostly used at the physical layer to create real circuits between source & destination. Real circuits were designed for real-time audio(telephony).

C End system switches A End system End system B

Circuit wide area network

In this fig the network has switches that allow traffic from sources to destinations. A source & destination can be a computer,router,bridge,or any other device that connects other networks.

Packet switching
For data communication,packet switching networks were designed; data are packetized and sent packet by packet. The main difference between a circuit switched & packet switched network is that the links are shared,channelized between different communication paths. A link between switch 1 & 2 may carry several packets at the the same time,each sent by a different source & going to different destinations.

Packet switching uses two approaches: 1. The datagram approach 2. The virtual circuit approach The datagram approach is mostly used in the network layer. The virtual circuit approach is a data link technology.

Message switching
In this no physical copper path is established in advance between sender & receiver. Instead, when the sender has a block of data to be sent,it is stored in the first switching office(i.e,router) & then forwarded later. Each block is received in its entirety,inspected for errors,& then transmitted. With message switching, there is no limit on block size,which means router must have disks to buffer long blocks.

The standards are divided into parts. The 802.1 standard gives an introduction to the set of standards & defines the interface primitives. The 802.2 standard describes the upper part of the data link layer. The parts 802.3 through 802.5 describes the 3 lan standards,the CSMA/CD,token bus & token ring standards respectively. Each standard covers the physical layer & MAC sublayer protocol.

IEEE Standard 802.3
This standard is for a 1-persistant CSMA/CD lan. E.g: when a station wants to transmit,it listen to the cable.if the cable is busy,the station waits until it goes idle;otherwise it transmits immediately. If two or more stations simultaneously begin transmitting on an idle cable,they will collide. All colliding stations then terminate their transmission,wait a random time,& repeat the whole process all over again.

The real beginning of 802.3 was the ALOHA system constructed to allow radio communication. Later,carrier sensing was added,& Xerox PARC built a 2.94 Mbps CSMA/CD system to connect over 100 personal working stations on a 1-km cable. This system was called ETHERNET. THE Xerox ethernet was so successful that Xerox,DEC,& intel drew up a standard for a 10-Mbps ethernet.

This standard formed the basis for 802.3. The published 802.3 standards differs from the ethernet specification in that it describes a whole family of 1-persistant CSMA/CD systems,running at speeds from 1 to 10 Mbps on various media.

802.3 Cabling
Four types of cabling are used. 10Base5 cabling,popularly called thick ethernet. It resembles a yellow garden hose,with markings every 2.5 metres to show where the taps go. Connections to it are generally made using vampire taps in which a pin is carefully forced halfway into the coaxial’s core. The notation 10Base5 means that it operates at 10 Mbps.

10Base2 or thin ethernet,which,in contrast to the garden-hose-like thick ethernet, bends easily. Connections to it are made using industry standards BNC connectors to form T junctions,rather than using vampire taps. Thin ethernet is much cheaper & easier to install,but it can run for only 200 metres & can handle only 30 machines per cable segment.

Detecting cable breaks,bad taps,or loose connectors can be a major problem. For this reason,a pulse of known shape is injected into the cable. If the pulse hits an obstacle or the end of the cable,an echo will be generated & sent back. By carefully timing the intervel between sending the pulse & receiving the echo,it is possible to localize the origin of the echo. This technique is called time domain reflectometry.

The problem associated with finding cable breaks have driven systems toward a different kind of wiring pattern,in which all stations have a cable running to a central hub. Usuallly,these wires are telephony company twisted pairs,mostly used in buildings. This scheme is called 10Base-T.

The 10Base-F cabling for 802.3 uses fiber optics. This is expensive due to the cost of the connectors & terminators,but it has excellent noise immunity.



Max. Nodes/ Advantages segment Seg. 500 m 100 Good for backbone Cheapest system Easy maintenance Best b/w buildings

10Base5 Thick coax

10Base2 Thin coax 200 m


10Base-T Twisted pair 10Base-F Fiber optics

100 m


2000 m


802.3 MAC Sublayer Protocol
Bytes 7 1 2 or 6 2 or 6 2 0-1500 0-46 4


Destination Source address address

data pad checks um

Start of frame delimiter

Length of data field

Each frame starts with a preamble of 7 bytes,each contatining the bit pattern of 10101010.

The frame contains two addresses,one for the destinatin & one for the source. The standard allows 2-bytes & 6-bytes addresses. The high order bit of the destination address is a 0 for ordinary addresses & 1 for group addresses. Group addresses allow multi stations to listen to a single address.

When a frame is sent to a group address, all the stations in the group receive it. Sending to a group of stations is called multicast. The length field tells how many bytes are pesent in the datd field,from a min of 0 to max of 1500. When a transceiver detects a collision,it truncates the current frame,which means that stray bits & piece of frame appear on the cable all the time.

To make it easier to distinguish valid frames from garbage,802.3 states that valid frames must be atleast 64 bytes long,from destination address to checksum. If the data portion of a frame is less than 46 bytes,the pad field is used to fill out the frame to the minimum size.

IEEE Standard 802.4: Token Bus
In this if there are n stations & it takes T sec to send a frame,no frame will ever have to wait more than nT sec to be sent. Every body liked the conceptual idea of a ring but did not like physical implementation because a break in the ring cable would bring the whole network down. Ring is a poor fit to the linear topology of most assembly lines. This standard,802.4 descirbes a LAN called a token bus.

Physically,the token bus is a linear or tree shaped cable onto which the stations are attached. Logically,the stations are organized into a ring,with each station knowing the address of the stataion to its left & right. When the logical ring is initialized,the highest numbered station may send the first frame. After it is done,it passes permission to its immediately neighbor by sending neighbor a special control frame called token.

Token Bus
Broad band coaxial cable 1 7 2 0 Logical ring

1 4


11 Direction of token motion


19 This station not currently in the logical ring

The token propagates around the logical ring,with only the token holder being permitted to transmit frames. Since only one station at a time holds the token, collisions do not occur. When a station passes the token,it sends a token frame specifically addressed to its logical neighbor in the ring. For the physical layer,the token bus uses the 75-ohms broadband coaxial cable used for cable television.

The 802.4 frame format
Bytes 1 1 1

Destination address Source data Check sum address
Frame Start delimiter control preambl e

2 or 6

2 or 6




End delimiter

IEEE Standard 802.5: Token Ring

A ring consists of a collection of ring interfaces connected by point to point lines. Each bit arriving at an interface is copied into a 1-bit buffer & then copied out onto the ring again. While in the buffer,the bit can be inspected & possibly modified before being written out. This copying step introduces a 1-bit delay at each interface.

Ring iterface


Undirectional ring

Ring Network

In a token ring a special bit pattern, called the token, circulates around the ring whenever all stations are idle. When a station wants to transmit a frame, it is required to seize the token & remove it from the ring before transmitting.

1 bit delay

Ring interface

To statio n

From station

To statio n

from statio n

There are two operating modes,listen & transmit. In listen mode,the input are simply copied to output. In transmit mode,which is entered only after the token has been seized,the interface breaks the connection between input & output,entering its own data onto the ring.

Comparison of 802.3 ‘Ethernet’ and 802.5 ‘Token Ring’
Generally they have similar technology with similar performance. 802.3 Ethernet – Advantages Widely used at present. People are experienced in using this technology. Simple Protocol. New computers can be added with having to bring the network down. Almost zero delay at low load, there is no need to wait for a token, you can transmit when ready.

Comparison of 802.3 ‘Ethernet’ and 802.5 ‘Token Ring’
802.3 Ethernet – Disadvantages The electronics is more complicated for carrier sense and collision detection. Ethernet is non-deterministic system (possibility of repeated collisions). This means that Ethernet is not suitable for network applications that require guaranted delivery times. Poor performance at high loads as there can be lots of collisions reducing the number of messages that are successfully transmitted.

Comparison of 802.3 ‘Ethernet’ and 802.5 ‘Token Ring’
802.5 Token Ring – Advantages Token Ring uses point-to-point connections between ring interfaces so that the electronic hardware can be fully digital and simple. There is no need for collision detection. Can use any medium,twisted pair is cheap and easy to install but could equally use fiber optic if available. Throughput excellent at high loads since there is no possibility of collisions unlike 802.3.

Comparison of 802.3 ‘Ethernet’ and 802.5 ‘Token Ring’
802.5 Token Ring – Disadvantages Computers must wait for the token to arrive, therefore at load, a computer is delayed before sending. Each token ring has a monitor computer, to look after the ring (i.e. remove damaged frames, handle lost frames and lost tokens). This introduces a critical point of failure. If the monitor computer failed, the remaining computers would have to wait until it is replaced before being able to continue.

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http://www.javvin.com/protocolToken.html http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Token_ring http://www.#IP/IEEE_802.4_-_TokenPassing_Bus_Access_Method.htm http://www.freesoft.org/CIE/RFC/1042/10.htm http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Network_switch http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circuit_switching http://voip.about.com/od/voipbasics/a/switchingtypes. htm http://www.thefreedictionary.com/message+switching http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Message_switching http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Packet_switching