10. More References

You've come this far, and now you're screaming for more! Where else can you go to learn more about all this stuff?

10.1. Books

For old-school actual hold-it-in-your-hand pulp paper books, try some of the following excellent books. I used to be an affiliate with a very popular internet bookseller, but their new customer tracking system is incompatible with a print document. As such, I get no more kickbacks. If you feel compassion for my plight, paypal a donation to beej@beej.us. :-)

Unix Network Programming, volumes 1-2 by W. Richard Stevens. Published by Prentice Hall. ISBNs for volumes 1-2: 0131411551, 0130810819.

Internetworking with TCP/IP, volumes I-III by Douglas E. Comer and David L. Stevens. Published by Prentice Hall. ISBNs for volumes I, II, and III: 0131876716, 0130319961, 0130320714.

TCP/IP Illustrated, volumes 1-3 by W. Richard Stevens and Gary R. Wright. Published by Addison Wesley. ISBNs for volumes 1, 2, and 3 (and a 3-volume set): 0201633469, 020163354X, 0201634953, (0201776316).

TCP/IP Network Administration by Craig Hunt. Published by O'Reilly & Associates, Inc. ISBN 0596002971.

Advanced Programming in the UNIX Environment by W. Richard Stevens. Published by Addison Wesley. ISBN 0201433079.

10.2. Web References

On the web:

BSD Sockets: A Quick And Dirty Primer (Unix system programming info, too!)

The Unix Socket FAQ

Intro to TCP/IP


The Winsock FAQ

And here are some relevant Wikipedia pages:

Berkeley Sockets

Internet Protocol (IP)

Transmission Control Protocol (TCP)

User Datagram Protocol (UDP)


Serialization (packing and unpacking data)

10.3. RFCs

RFCs—the real dirt! These are documents that describe assigned numbers, programming APIs, and protocols that are used on the Internet. I've included links to a few of them here for your enjoyment, so grab a bucket of popcorn and put on your thinking cap:

RFC 1—The First RFC; this gives you an idea of what the "Internet" was like just as it was coming to life, and an insight into how it was being designed from the ground up. (This RFC is completely obsolete, obviously!)

RFC 768—The User Datagram Protocol (UDP)

RFC 791—The Internet Protocol (IP)

RFC 793—The Transmission Control Protocol (TCP)

RFC 854—The Telnet Protocol

RFC 959—File Transfer Protocol (FTP)

RFC 1350—The Trivial File Transfer Protocol (TFTP)

RFC 1459—Internet Relay Chat Protocol (IRC)

RFC 1918—Address Allocation for Private Internets

RFC 2131—Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP)

RFC 2616—Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP)

RFC 2821—Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP)

RFC 3330—Special-Use IPv4 Addresses

RFC 3493—Basic Socket Interface Extensions for IPv6

RFC 3542—Advanced Sockets Application Program Interface (API) for IPv6

RFC 3849—IPv6 Address Prefix Reserved for Documentation

RFC 3920—Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol (XMPP)

RFC 3977—Network News Transfer Protocol (NNTP)

RFC 4193—Unique Local IPv6 Unicast Addresses

RFC 4506—External Data Representation Standard (XDR)

The IETF has a nice online tool for searching and browsing RFCs.