This book is now in its fifth edition. Each edition has corresponded to a different phase in the way computer networks were used. When the first edition appeared in 1980, networks were an academic curiosity. When the second edition appeared in 1988, networks were used by universities and large businesses. When the third edition appeared in 1996, computer networks, especially the Internet, had become a daily reality for millions of people. By the fourth edition, in 2003, wireless networks and mobile computers had become commonplace for accessing the Web and the Internet. Now, in the fifth edition, networks are about content distribution (especially videos using CDNs and peer-to-peer networks) and mobile phones are small computers on the Internet.
Computer Networks, 5/e is appropriate for Computer Networking or Introduction to Networking courses at both the undergraduate and graduate level in Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, CIS, MIS, and Business Departments.
Tanenbaum takes a structured approach to explaining how networks work from the inside out. He starts with an explanation of the physical layer of networking, computer hardware and transmission systems; then works his way up to network applications. Tanenbaum's in-depth application coverage includes email; the domain name system; the World Wide Web (both client- and server-side); and multimedia (including voice over IP, Internet radio video on demand, video conferencing, and streaming media. Each chapter follows a consistent approach: Tanenbaum presents key principles, then illustrates them utilizing real-world example networks that run through the entire book—the Internet, and wireless networks, including Wireless LANs, broadband wireless and Bluetooth. The Fifth Edition includes a chapter devoted exclusively to network security. The textbook is supplemented by a Solutions Manual, as well as a Website containing PowerPoint slides, art in various forms, and other tools for instruction, including a protocol simulator whereby students can develop and test their own network protocols.