Telecom 101 is an invaluable Telecommunications Textbook, as well as the TCO CTA Certification Study Guide and Reference Handbook.

Check the 4.8 star rating and reviews ★★★★★ on Amazon

This comprehensive telecommunications training book has three parts:
  • Fundamentals of Telecommunications,
  • Understanding Data Communications,
  • Understanding IP and Networking

Packed with information, authoritative, up to date, covering all major topics, Telecom 101 is an invaluable study guide and day-to-day reference.

Telecom 101 is based on the famous telecommunications training course Course 101 Telecom, Datacom and Networking for Non-Engineers.

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7" x 9" softcover textbook • 488 pages • $179 ISBN 9781894887038 • 4th edition • Published March 2016 Print quantities are limited. Order today to avoid disappointment.

also available as an eBook ISBN 9781894887786

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Telecom 101: To keep your purchase cost as low as possible, three books:

  • Fundamentals of Telecommunications,
  • Understanding Data Communications, and
  • Understanding IP and Networking
are not sold separately, but bound into a single volume Telecom 101, with 430 pages, 175 diagrams and a full index, all for one low price. An invaluable reference The material covers telecom, datacom and networking from A-Z, organized in logical chapters covering all major topics, and written in our signature "telecom for non-engineers" style. It will be an invaluable day-to-day handbook, either on its own, or to complement instructor and video training. Up to date The fourth edition, published 2016, is completely revised and updated, with complete coverage of the fundamentals plus up-to-date information on Gigabit Ethernet, CDMA and 3G cellular, DSL and Cable, Wireless LANs, IP, Voice over IP, IP VPNs and more. Value Pricing If sold separately, the price for these three books would be:
  • Fundamentals of Telecommunications: $118, plus
  • Understanding Data Communications: $118, plus
  • Understanding IP and Networking: $118
for a total of US$354 for all three books if purchased separately. You can get all three books bound in one volume called Telecom 101 for the low price of $179. Compare this to hunting down and paying hundreds of dollars for multiple books by different authors that may or may not cover what you need to know - in plain English - and you'll agree this is a very attractive deal. CTA Study Manual Telecom 101 covers the material needed to pass the Telecommunications Certification Organization Certified Telecommunications Analyst (CTA) certification. Hurry! The print run is limited. Order today to avoid disappointment.

Table of Contents

Following is a chapter-by-chapter outline Teracom’s textbooks. The three books, Fundamentals of Telecommunications, Understanding Data Communications and Understanding IP and Networking are bound together in one volume called Telecom 101. Looking through this outline, you’ll see that many of the chapters are actually self-contained references on subject areas such as telephony, T1, LANs, Voice over IP and many more. Instead of having to purchase multiple books from different authors to explain each of these topics, you get them all, bound in a single volume, in a consistent style and quality, for one low price. Order today to obtain this invaluable reference!

Part 1: Fundamentals of Telecommunications

We begin with the fundamentals of telephony and the telephone network – the basis for understanding everything else.

1 Introduction

Chapter 1 is the introduction to the book. We discuss the approach take in organizing the topics, and suggestions for how to use the material... and the Three Answers, answering any question in telecommunications.

  • 1.1 Our Approach
  • 1.2 How the Text is Organized
  • 1.3 How to Use This Text
  • 1.4 The Three Answers
    • 1.4.1 Answer Number 1: Money
    • 1.4.2 Answer Number 2: History
    • 1.4.3 Answer Number 3: It's All Pretty Much the Same Thing

2 Fundamentals of Telephony

Whether you're interested in telecom, datacom, wireless or networking, everything begins with the Public Switched Telephone Network and Plain Ordinary Telephone Service. We'll begin with a model for the PSTN, explaining analog circuits, the voiceband and circuit switching, common telephony buzzwords and jargon, and an overview of SS7. This chapter is completed with Voice over IP... part of today's fundamentals.

  • 2.1 History of Telecommunications
    • 2.1.1 Invention of the Telephone
    • 2.1.2 Local Phone Companies
    • 2.1.3 The Bell System
    • 2.1.4 US Regulation and Competition
    • 2.1.5 Consolidation
    • 2.1.6 Other Carriers
    • 2.1.7 Canadian Telegraph Companies
    • 2.1.8 Canadian Telephone Companies
    • 2.1.9 The Rest of the World
  • 2.2 The Public Switched Telephone Network
    • 2.2.1 Basic Model of the PSTN
    • 2.2.2 Loops
    • 2.2.3 Trunks and Circuit Switching
    • 2.2.4 Remotes
    • 2.2.5 DSL and DSLAMs in the Outside Plant
    • 2.2.6 Brownfields: DSL on Copper to the Premise
    • 2.2.7 Greenfields: GPONs on Fiber to the Premise
    • 2.2.8 Active Ethernet to the Premise
    • 2.2.9 Why the Loop Still Matters
  • 2.3 Analog
    • 2.3.1 Analog Signals
    • 2.3.2 Analog Circuits
  • 2.4 Capacity Restrictions
    • 2.4.1 What is Speech?
    • 2.4.2 Do Trees Falling in the Forest Make a Sound?
    • 2.4.3 The Voiceband
    • 2.4.4 Bandwidth
    • 2.4.5 Why Does the Voiceband Stop at 3300 Hz?
    • 2.4.6 Problems With Voiceband Restrictions
  • 2.5 Problems with Analog Transmission
    • 2.5.1 Attenuation and Amplifiers
    • 2.5.2 Electro-Magnetic Interference
    • 2.5.3 Crosstalk
    • 2.5.4 Impulse Noise
  • 2.6 Plain Ordinary Telephone Service (POTS)
    • 2.6.1 Tip and Ring
    • 2.6.4 Microphone and Speaker
    • 2.6.5 Balanced Signaling
    • 2.6.6 Two-Way Simultaneous
    • 2.6.7 Hybrid Transformer
    • 2.6.8 Battery
    • 2.6.9 Lightning Protection
    • 2.6.10 Supervision
    • 2.6.11 Call Progress Tones
  • 2.7 Network Addresses: Telephone Numbers
    • 2.7.1 Dialing Plan
    • 2.7.2 Address Signaling
    • 2.7.3 Pulse Dialing
    • 2.7.4 DTMF: "Touch Tone"
    • 2.7.5 In-Band Signaling
    • 2.7.6 "Hidden" Buttons
    • 2.7.7 Caller ID
  • 2.8 SS7
    • 2.8.1 Out-Of-Band Signaling
    • 2.8.2 Advanced Intelligent Network (AIN)
    • 2.8.3 Switch-Based Call Routing
    • 2.8.4 SS7 In Practice
    • 2.8.5 Residential Service Application Example
    • 2.8.6 Business Service Application Example
  • 2.9 Voice over IP (VoIP)
    • 2.9.1 Packetized Voice
    • 2.9.2 VoIP System Components
    • 2.9.3 VoIP Phones and Other VoIP Terminals
    • 2.9.4 Physical Connections: Wired and Wireless LANs
    • 2.9.5 Softswitch
    • 2.9.6 Router
    • 2.9.7 Gateway
    • 2.9.8 Firewall

3 Switching

This chapter covers switching, starting with a model of the telecom network showing where switches fit into the network, traditional telephone switches: Centrex, PBX and PBX trunks, and how that relates to the newer ideas of softswitches, Hosted PBX and SIP trunking.

  • 3.1 Telephone Network Architecture
    • 3.1.1 Access Network
    • 3.1.2 Switching Network
    • 3.1.3 Transmission Network
  • 3.2 Telephone Switches
    • 3.2.1 Circuit Switching
    • 3.2.2 CO Switches
    • 3.2.3 Line Cards
    • 3.2.4 Digital Switching
  • 3.3 Traditional PBX and Centrex
    • 3.3.1 PBX
    • 3.3.2 PBX Trunks
    • 3.3.3 Digital Telephones: Electronic Business Sets
    • 3.3.4 PBX and PABX
    • 3.3.5 Attendant
    • 3.3.6 Automated Attendant
    • 3.3.7 IVR
    • 3.3.8 Direct Inward Dialing (DID)
    • 3.3.9 Automated Call Distribution (ACD)
    • 3.3.10 Call Centers
    • 3.3.11 Advantages of PBX
    • 3.3.12 Disadvantages of PBX
    • 3.3.13 Centrex
    • 3.3.14 Advantages of Centrex
    • 3.3.15 Disadvantages of Centrex
    • 3.3.16 PBX vs. Centrex
    • 3.3.17 Key Systems
  • 3.4 SIP, Soft Switches, Hosted PBX and IP Centrex
    • 3.4.1 Hard Switches
    • 3.4.2 Soft Switches
    • 3.4.3 SIP
    • 3.4.4 Additional Functions
    • 3.4.5 Location Independence
    • 3.4.6 Customer Premise Softswitch
    • 3.4.7 Centrex
    • 3.4.8 Hosted PBX
  • 3.5 SIP Trunking
    • 3.5.1 PBX Trunks and Tie Lines
    • 3.5.2 VoIP Trunking
    • 3.5.3 Gateway Service

4 The Telecommunications Industry

Chapter 4 provides a practical overview of the telecommunications industry: service providers and alliances, competitive forces, structure and regulation; resellers, IXCs, LECs, CLECs and collocations... the telecom business.

  • 4.1 US Telephone Companies
    • 4.1.1 LECs, LATAs and Baby Bells
    • 4.1.2 Independents
    • 4.1.3 Inter-Exchange Carriers: IXCs
    • 4.1.4 Switched Access Charge
    • 4.1.5 CLECs and ILECs
    • 4.1.6 Resellers
    • 4.1.7 Consolidation
    • 4.1.8 Cable TV: Broadband Carriers
  • 4.2 AT&T and Verizon
  • 4.3 Canadian Telephone Companies
    • 4.3.1 Bell Canada
    • 4.3.2 TELUS
    • 4.3.3 Ownership
    • 4.3.4 Competitive Inter-Exchange Carriers
    • 4.3.5 Resellers
    • 4.3.6 Wireless
  • 4.4 PSTN Switching Center Hierarchy
    • 4.4.1 Class 5: Central Office
    • 4.4.2 Wire Center
    • 4.4.3 Local Calls
    • 4.4.4 Class 4: Toll Center
    • 4.4.5 Class 1, 2 and 3 Switching Centers
    • 4.4.6 High Usage Trunks
  • 4.5 Switched Access to LD Competitors: LECs, POPs and IXCs
    • 4.5.1 Access Network, LECs and ILECs
    • 4.5.2 Long Distance: IXCs
    • 4.5.3 Switched Access
    • 4.5.4 POP: Point of Presence
    • 4.5.5 Equal Access and PIC Codes
  • 4.6 High-Capacity Access to Long-Distance
    • 4.6.1 Dedicated Line from the ILEC In-City
    • 4.6.2 Tariffs
    • 4.6.3 Advantages and Disadvantages
  • 4.7 CLEC: Collocations and Dark Fiber
    • 4.7.1 Unbundling
    • 4.7.2 Dark Fiber and Dry Copper
    • 4.7.3 Competitive Local Exchange Carrier (CLEC)
    • 4.7.4 Collocations
    • 4.7.5 Advantages
    • 4.7.6 Disadvantages
    • 4.7.7 Application
  • 4.8 Bypass
    • 4.8.1 Easements
  • 4.9 Competitive Carrier Network Model: Rings, POPs and MANs
    • 4.9.1 Fiber Rings

Part 2: Telecommunications Technologies

The second part of Telecom 101 is devoted to telecommunications technologies: the actual methods used to implement circuits and services.

5 Digital

This chapter will give you a real understanding of what "digital" means, and how it is implemented. We'll understand how voice is digitized, the standard 64 kb/s bit rate, plus digital video standards like HD and 4K. We finish understanding how bits are actually transmitted "digitally" on copper and fiber.

  • 5.1 Analog and Digital: What do we really mean?
    • 5.1.1 Analog Signal
    • 5.1.2 Analog Circuit
    • 5.1.3 Digital Signal
    • 5.1.4 Digital Circuit
    • 5.1.5 Bandwidth
  • 5.2 Continuous vs. Discrete Signals
    • 5.2.1 Continuous Signals
    • 5.2.2 Discrete Signals
  • 5.3 Voice Digitization (Analog-Digital Conversion)
    • 5.3.1 Quantization
    • 5.3.2 Sampling
    • 5.3.3 Coding
  • 5.4 Voice Reconstruction (Digital - Analog Conversion)
    • 5.4.1 Reconstruction
    • 5.4.1 Reconstruction
    • 5.4.3 Aliasing Error
  • 5.5 Voice Digitization: 64 kb/s G.711 Standard
    • 5.5.1 256 Quantization Levels.
    • 5.5.2 8,000 Samples per Second
    • 5.5.3 8-bit Coding
    • 5.5.4 64 kb/s G.711 Codec Standard
    • 5.5.5 64 kb/s DS0 Channels
    • 5.5.6 64 kb/s Packetized Voice
    • 5.5.7 μ-law and a-law
  • 5.6 Digital Video, H.264 and MPEG4
    • 5.6.1 Digital Video Cameras
    • 5.6.2 Factors Affecting Video Quality
    • 5.6.3 Definition vs. Resolution
    • 5.6.4 Standard Definition, Interlaced and 480i
    • 5.6.5 High Definition, Progressive and 720p
    • 5.6.6 Full HD 1080 and 2K
    • 5.6.7 Ultra HD and 4K
    • 5.6.8 Compression
    • 5.6.9 MPEG
    • 5.6.10 MPEG-4 and H.264
  • 5.7 Digital Transmission: Binary Pulses
    • 5.7.1 Analog: Attenuation, Added Noise and Amplifiers
    • 5.7.2 Digital: Pulses and Repeaters
    • 5.7.3 Repeaters on Copper Wires
    • 5.7.4 Repeaters on Fiber
    • 5.7.5 Comfort Noise Generation

6 Transmission Systems

In this chapter, we cover the high-capacity systems developed to carry many users’ traffic. This starts with the installed base of channelized systems, the hierarchy of DS0, DS1 and DS3 rates and an overview of T1, T3, SONET, SDH and ISDN. Then our attention turns to the new-generation packetized systems, introducing the concepts of overbooking and bandwidth on demand instead of channels, routers instead of multiplexers, how this is implemented with frames and packets, the need for MPLS traffic management, and the coexistence and transition from channels to packets.

  • 6.1 Channelized Time Division Multiplexing (TDM)
    • 6.1.1 Channels
    • 6.1.2 Example: Time-Share Condos
    • 6.1.3 Trunk Carrier Systems
    • 6.1.4 Inefficient for Data
  • 6.2 Multiplexers
    • 6.2.1 Example: T1
    • 6.2.2 T1 Mux or Channel Bank
    • 6.2.3 Time Slots
    • 6.2.4 Framing Bits
    • 6.2.5 DS1 Rate
    • 6.2.6 CSU
    • 6.2.7 Repeaters
    • 6.2.8 Synchronization
    • 6.2.9 Applications for T1
    • 6.2.10 SONET TDM on Fiber
  • 6.3 The Digital Hierarchy: Legacy Channelized Transmission Speeds
    • 6.3.1 Kilo, Mega, Giga, Tera
    • 6.3.2 DS0
    • 6.3.3 DS1 and E1
    • 6.3.4 DS2
    • 6.3.5 DS3
    • 6.3.6 STM and SDH
  • 6.4 Digital Carrier Systems:
    • Legacy Transmission Technologies
    • 6.4.1 Technologies
    • 6.4.2 Carrier Systems
    • 6.4.3 T1
    • 6.4.4 T3 and Bit-Interleaved Multiplexing
    • 6.4.5 SONET and Byte-Interleaved Multiplexing
    • 6.4.6 SDH
    • 6.4.7 Line Speed vs. Technology
  • 6.5 Framing
    • 6.5.1 Synchronous Time-Division Multiplexing
    • 6.5.2 Framing and Transmission Frames
    • 6.5.3 DS1 Frame
    • 6.5.4 STS-1 (DS3) Frames
    • 6.5.5 SONET Optical Carrier Frames
    • 6.5.6 Advantages and Disadvantages of Channels
  • 6.6 ISDN
    • 6.6.1 Basic Rate Interface (BRI)
    • 6.6.2 Obsolescence of BRI
    • 6.6.3 Primary Rate Interface (PRI)
    • 6.6.4 PRI Physical Connection
    • 6.6.5 T1 vs. PRI
  • 6.7 Statistical Time Division Multiplexing
    • 6.7.1 Toll Plaza Example
    • 6.7.2 Overbooking / Oversubscription
    • 6.7.3 The Need For Addressing
    • 6.7.4 Statistical Multiplexing Equipment
    • 6.7.5 Packet Networks
  • 6.8 Framing on IP Packet Networks
    • 6.8.1 Old vs. New
    • 6.8.2 MAC Frames Instead of Framing Bits
    • 6.8.3 Routers
    • 6.8.4 Prioritization
    • 6.8.5 MPLS
    • 6.8.6 Implementation with Optical Ethernet
  • 6.9 Coexistence and Transition from Channels to Packets
    • 6.9.1 Old: Everything in Channels
    • 6.9.2 New: Everything in Packets
    • 6.9.3 Gateways for Legacy Voice
    • 6.9.4 Packetized Voice from the Customer Premise
    • 6.9.5 Packets over Non-Channelized SONET

7 The Cloud and Service Provisioning

In this short chapter, we explain the "network cloud" and how services are actually provided by carriers: the three types of services: dedicated lines, circuit-switched and packet-switched, the three types of edge equipment: multiplexers, telephone switches and routers, and which is used for what.

  • 7.1 Anatomy of a Service
  • 7.2 The Network "Cloud"
    • 7.3 Inside the Network Cloud
    • 7.4 Network Equipment
  • 7.5 Service Provisioning Summary

8 Fiber Optics

This chapter covers the essentials of fiber optics, including fundamentals of wavelengths and glass fibers, Dense Wave-Division Multiplexing (DWDM), Optical Ethernet, fiber in network core, edge and access, Metropolitan Area Networks (MANs), Fiber To The Premise (FTTP) and Passive Optical Networks (PONs).

  • 8.1 Fiber Basics
    • 8.1.1 Lamdas
    • 8.1.2 Pulses of Light
    • 8.1.3 Attenuation and Dispersion
  • 8.2 Glass Fiber and Fiber Cables
    • 8.2.1 Core
    • 8.2.2 Cladding and Coating
    • 8.2.3 Cables
    • 8.2.4 Redundancy
  • 8.3 Optical Wavelengths, Bands and Modes
    • 8.3.1 Bands
    • 8.3.2 Multimode and Modal Dispersion
    • 8.3.3 Single-Mode Fiber
    • 8.3.4 Chromatic Dispersion
    • 8.3.5 Polarization-Mode Dispersion
  • 8.4 Wave-Division Multiplexing: CWDM and DWDM
    • 8.4.1 WDM
    • 8.4.2 WDM Multiplexers
    • 8.4.3 Optical Ethernet Paths
    • 8.4.4 Current and Future Capacities
  • 8.5 Optical Ethernet
    • 8.5.1 Point-to-Point Connections
    • 8.5.2 SFP Modules and Connectors
    • 8.5.3 IEEE Standards
  • 8.6 Network Core
    • 8.6.1 SONET and SDH
    • 8.6.2 Optical Ethernet, RPR and MPLS
    • 8.6.3 Fiber Rings
  • 8.7 Metropolitan Area Network
    • 8.7.1 MANs to Office Buildings and Apartment Buildings
    • 8.7.2 MANs to Neighborhoods
  • 8.8 Fiber to the Premise (FTTP) & PONs
    • 8.8.1 Passive Optical Network (PON)
    • 8.8.2 Active Ethernet

9 DSL and Cable Modems: Last Mile on Copper

While the lucky few have fiber to the home, many others will use existing copper-wire entry cables for high-speed Internet while waiting for it. Accordingly, this chapter covers Last Mile on Copper: DSL and Cable Modems, explaining the fundamentals of modems and modulation, DSL, DSLAMs, VDSL, broadband cable modems and DOCSIS.

  • 9.1 Modems
    • 9.1.1 Why Bother With Modems?
  • 9.2 Modulation Techniques
    • 9.2.1 Modulation of Carrier Frequencies
    • 9.2.2 Amplitude Shift Keying (ASK)
    • 9.2.3 Frequency Shift Keying (FSK)
    • 9.2.4 Phase Shift Keying (PSK)
    • 9.2.5 Define More Signals to Communicate More Bits
    • 9.2.6 Quadrature PSK (QPSK)
    • 9.2.7 Quadrature Amplitude Modulation (QAM)
    • 9.2.8 Constraints on Achievable Bit Rate
  • 9.3 Digital Subscriber Line (DSL)
    • 9.3.1 DSL: Modems Above The Voiceband
    • 9.3.2 ADSL, SDSL and XDSL
  • 9.4 DSLAMs
    • 9.4.1 DSL Modem Hard-Wired to Loop
    • 9.4.2 Coexistence with POTS
  • 9.5 Fiber to the Neighborhood (FTTN),
    • DSL to the Premise
    • 9.5.1 Loop Length
    • 9.5.2 Remote DSLAMs, OPI and SAC Boxes
  • 9.6 DSL Standards
    • 9.6.1 ADSL2+
    • 9.6.2 VDSL2
    • 9.6.3 VDSL2 Frequency Bands and Profiles
    • 9.6.4 Bonding
    • 9.6.5 Vectoring
  • 9.7 Broadband Carriers: FTTN & Broadband Coax to the Premise
    • 9.7.1 Hybrid Fiber-Coax Network
    • 9.7.2 Frequency Channels
    • 9.7.3 Fiber Serving Area
    • 9.7.4 Television Converters
    • 9.7.5 Modems on CATV Channels
    • 9.7.6 Two-Way Communications Over Shared Access
  • 9.8 DOCSIS and Cable Modem Standards
    • 9.8.1 DOCSIS 1: Contention-Based Channel Sharing
    • 9.8.2 DOCSIS 2: Reserved Time Slots on Channels
    • 9.8.3 DOCSIS 3: CDMA on Channels
    • 9.8.4 DOCSIS 3.1: OFDM
    • 9.8.5 Wider Channels

10 Wireless

Chapter 10 is on Wireless, concentrating on mobile communications: cellular and mobility concepts, the technologies TDMA, CDMA and OFDM, the generations from 1G to 4G, and the systems GSM, UMTS, 1X and LTE. We'll understand Internet access over cellular, Wi-Fi, Wi-Fi security and satellite-based communications.

  • 10.1 Radio
  • 10.2 Mobile Networks
    • 10.2.1 0G: The Mobile Phone System
    • 10.2.2 Mobility
    • 10.2.3 Base Station, Cell, Airlink and Handset
    • 10.2.4 Mobile Switch
    • 10.2.5 Backhaul
    • 10.2.6 Registration and Paging
    • 10.2.7 Handoff
  • 10.3 Cellular Radio and 1G
    • 10.3.1 1G: The Advanced Mobile Phone System
    • 10.3.2 Cells
    • 10.3.3 Frequency Re-Use
    • 10.3.4 Analog on Radio Channels
    • 10.3.5 AMPS Handoffs
    • 10.3.6 AMPS Capacity
  • 10.4 Second Generation: Digital Cellular
    • 10.4.1 PCS and GSM
    • 10.4.2 Digital Cellular Radio
  • 10.5 Mobile Internet and "Data" Plans
    • 10.5.1 Cellphone as a Tethered Modem
    • 10.5.2 Packet Relay to the Internet
    • 10.5.3 Dongles
    • 10.5.4 Cellphone as the Terminal
    • 10.5.5 "Data" Billing Plans
    • 10.5.6 Fluid Layout, Responsive Design & "Mobile" Pages
  • 10.6 FDMA, TDMA, CDMA and OFDM
    • 10.6.1 FDMA
    • 10.6.2 TDMA
    • 10.6.3 CDMA
    • 10.6.4 OFDM
  • 10.7 3G Cellular: CDMA
    • 10.7.1 IMT-2000
    • 10.7.2 1X or CDMA2000: IMT-MC
    • 10.7.3 UMTS or W-CDMA: IMT-DS
    • 10.7.4 Data-Optimized Carriers: HSPA and EV-DO
    • 10.7.5 The End of the Standards War
  • 10.8 4G Mobile Cellular: LTE
    • 10.8.1 Universal Terrestrial Radio Access Network Long-Term Evolution
    • 10.8.2 OFDM
    • 10.8.3 3GPP Standards Committees
    • 10.8.4 Qualcomm Patents
  • 10.9 Wireless LANs
    • 10.9.1 System Components
    • 10.9.2 Unlicensed Radio Bands
    • 10.9.3 802.11 Standards
    • 10.9.4 VoIP over Wireless LANs
    • 10.9.5 Wireless Security
  • 10.10 Communication Satellites
    • 10.10.1 Transponders
    • 10.10.2 Geosynchronous Orbit
    • 10.10.3 Low Earth Orbit

Part 3: The IP Packet-Switched Telecom Network (IP-PSTN)

The third part of Telecom 101 is dedicated to the new-generation IP telecommunications network.

11 "Data" Communications

We begin by understanding how the IP telecom network achieves the long-sought goal of convergence, what "convergence" is, and how it was achieved by treating voice and video like data. Then we'll do a "flyover" of datacom and networking basics: DTE and DCE, serial and parallel, LANs and WANs, MAC and IP addressing.

  • 11.1 Convergence: Treat Everything Like Data
    • 11.1.1 Convergence via ISDN
    • 11.1.2 Convergence via ATM
    • 11.1.3 Convergence via IP
  • 11.2 Information Theory
  • 11.3 Data Circuit Model
  • 11.4 DTE: Data Terminal Equipment
  • 11.5 Data Circuits
    • 11.5.1 Analog Data Circuits
    • 11.5.2 2-Wire and 4-Wire Circuits
    • 11.5.3 Broadband Analog
    • 11.5.4 Analog on Fiber
    • 11.5.5 Digital
  • 11.6 DCE: Data Circuit-Terminating Equipment
  • 11.7 Point-to-Point Circuits
  • 11.8 Multidrop Circuits
  • 11.9 LANs: Local Area Networks
  • 11.10 WANs: Wide Area Networks

12 Coding, Frames and Packets

In this chapter, we'll go over the fundamentals of what used to be called “data communications”: the solid base necessary to understand the new-generation IP telecom network... especially the critical ideas of MAC frames and IP packets, and how the MAC address relates to the IP address, and what changes as a packet is forwarded by routers hop-by-hop across the network.

  • 12.1 Essential Functions for Communication
    • 12.1.1 Coding
    • 12.1.2 Bits
    • 12.1.3 Bytes
    • 12.1.4 Error Control
    • 12.1.5 Framing
    • 12.1.6 Addressing
  • 12.2 Coding Quantities: Number Systems
    • 12.2.1 Decimal
    • 12.2.2 Binary
    • 12.2.3 Hexadecimal
    • 12.2.4 Common Use for Hexadecimal
  • 12.3 Coding Text
    • 12.3.1 ASCII
    • 12.3.2 Unicode
  • 12.4 "Asynchronous": Start/Stop/Parity
    • 12.4.1 Asynchronous Communications
    • 12.4.2 Framing: Start and Stop Bits
    • 12.4.3 Parity Checking
  • 12.5 Frames and MAC Addresses
    • 12.5.1 Data Link Protocol
    • 12.5.2 Framing
    • 12.5.3 Address
    • 12.5.4 Control Field
    • 12.5.5 Payload
    • 12.5.6 CRC: Cyclic Redundancy Checking
  • 12.6 Networks, Packets & IP Addresses
  • 12.7 Packets vs. Frames
    • 12.7.1 Link Address vs. Network Address
  • 12.8 IP Packets
    • 12.8.1 IP Packet Header
    • 12.8.2 Connectionless Network Service
    • 12.8.3 Relationship to TCP

13 The OSI Layers and Protocol Stacks

There are so many functions that need to be performed to implement phone calls, television, web browsing, email and everything else over the IP network, a structure is necessary to be able to discuss separate issues separately. The most widely-used structure is the OSI Reference Model and its layers. In this chapter, we define what a layer is, what the layers in the model are, and give examples of protocols used to implement each layer including SMTP email; ASCII, encryption and codecs; SIP, POP and HTTP; TCP and UDP, IP and Ethernet. The chapter concludes with protocol stacks, practical insight into how a protocol stack works and standards bodies.

  • 13.1 Protocols and Standards
    • 13.1.1 Functions To Be Performed
    • 13.1.2 Monolithic vs. Structured Protocols
    • 13.1.3 Open Systems and Standards
  • 13.2 ISO OSI Reference Model
    • 13.2.1 Layers
    • 13.2.2 Separability of the Layers
    • 13.2.3 Protocol Stacks
  • 13.3 The OSI 7-Layer Model
  • 13.4 Physical Layer: 802.3, DSL, DOCSIS
  • 13.5 Data Link Layer: 802 MAC
    • 13.5.1 LANs, Frames and Layer 2 Switches
    • 13.5.2 MAC Frames and MAC Addresses
    • 13.5.3 Other Data Link Protocols
  • 13.6 Network Layer: IP and MPLS
    • 13.6.1 Packet-Switched Networks
    • 13.6.2 Routing Table Updates
    • 13.6.3 MPLS
  • 13.7 Transport Layer: TCP and UDP
    • 13.7.1 Reliability
    • 13.7.2 Port Numbers
  • 13.8 Session Layer: POP, SIP, HTTP
    • 13.8.1 Password Authentication
    • 13.8.2 Authentication Servers
    • 13.8.3 Cookies
    • 13.8.4 Client-Server Sessions
    • 13.8.5 Peer-Peer Sessions
  • 13.9 Presentation Layer: ASCII, Encryption, Codecs
    • 13.9.1 Character Coding
    • 13.9.2 E-Mail Coding
    • 13.9.3 Codecs
    • 13.9.4 Data Compression
    • 13.9.5 Symmetric Encryption: Private Key
    • 13.9.6 Asymmetric Encryption: Public Key Encryption and Digital Signatures
    • 13.9.7 Example of Separability of Layers
    • 13.9.8 Example of Peer Protocol
  • 13.10 Application Layer: SMTP, HTML, English …
    • 13.10.1 Email
    • 13.10.2 More Application Layer Examples
  • 13.11 Protocol Stacks
    • 13.11.1 Example: Web Surfing
    • 13.11.2 Voice over IP
  • 13.12 Protocol Stack in Operation: Russian Dolls
    • 13.12.1 Communications Flow
    • 13.12.2 Segmentation at Each Layer
    • 13.12.3 Nested Headers: Matryoshka dolls
  • 13.13 Standards Organizations
    • 13.13.1 ISO
    • 13.13.2 DOD and IETF
    • 13.13.3 ITU and Bellcore
    • 13.13.4 TIA and IEEE
    • 13.13.5 ANSI

14 Ethernet, LANs and VLANs

Chapter 14 is all about Layer 2, which is implemented with 802.3 Ethernet and LAN switches. We'll cover fundamental LAN concepts, MAC addresses and MAC frames, LAN cables, the evolution of Ethernet from copper wires to Optical Ethernet on fiber, LAN / Layer 2 switches and the critical concept of VLANs used to separate traffic.

  • 14.1 LAN Basics
    • 14.1.1 Bus Topology
    • 14.1.2 Broadcast Domain
    • 14.1.3 Balanced Configuration
    • 14.1.4 Collision Domain
    • 14.1.5 CSMA-CD Access Control
    • 14.1.6 MAC Address
    • 14.1.7 Communication of MAC Frames
  • 14.2 Ethernet and 802 Standards
    • 14.2.1 IEEE 802 Standards
    • 14.2.2 Ethernet vs. 802.3
    • 14.2.3 Token Ring
    • 14.2.4 Baseband LAN
    • 14.2.5 10BASE-5
    • 14.2.6 10BASE-2
    • 14.2.7 10BASE-T
    • 14.2.8 100BASE-T
    • 14.2.9 1000BASE-T
    • 14.2.10 Optical Ethernet
  • 14.3 LAN Cables and Categories
    • 14.3.1 Unshielded Twisted Pair (UTP)
    • 14.3.2 Shielding
    • 14.3.3 TIA-568 LAN Cable Categories
    • 14.3.4 TIA-568A vs. TIA-568B
    • 14.3.5 Maximum Cable Length and Cabling Architecture
    • 14.3.6 Difference Between Categories
    • 14.3.7 Which Category To Use
  • 14.4 LAN Switches: Layer 2 Switches
    • 14.4.1 Hardware
    • 14.4.2 Purpose and Operation
    • 14.4.3 Buffers
    • 14.4.4 Frame Forwarding
    • 14.4.5 Broadcast Domain Defined by Switch
  • 14.5 VLANs
    • 14.5.1 Broadcast Domains Defined in Software
    • 14.5.2 Routing Between VLANs
    • 14.5.3 Header Tag
    • 14.5.4 Traffic Management and Network Security

15 IP Networks, Routers and Addresses

In this chapter, we'll understand IP packet networks, beginning with the functions routers perform, and how IP subnets are mapped onto broadcast domains to simplify routing. Then we'll cover the whole IP addressing story including IP address classes, DHCP, dynamic and static addresses, public and private addresses, Network Address Translation and IP version 6 (IPv6), and how TCP and UDP and port numbers fit into the story.

  • 15.1 Definition of Network
  • 15.2 Simplest Example: Private Network
    • 15.2.1 Broadcast Domain at Each Location
    • 15.2.2 Edge Router at Each Location
    • 15.2.3 Subnet Assigned to Broadcast Domain
    • 15.2.4 Default Gateway
    • 15.2.5 Subnet Mask
    • 15.2.6 Packet Creation
    • 15.2.7 Packet Transmission from the Source
    • 15.2.8 IP to MAC Address Resolution Protocol (ARP)
    • 15.2.9 Packet Routing
    • 15.2.10 Overbooking & Bandwidth on Demand
  • 15.3 Routers and Customer Edge
    • 15.3.1 Customer Edge Device
    • 15.3.2 Router Connects Broadcast Domains
    • 15.3.3 Routing
    • 15.3.4 Denying Communications
    • 15.3.5 Packet Filtering
    • 15.3.6 Port Filtering
    • 15.3.7 Firewall
  • 15.4 IPv4 Address Classes
    • 15.4.1 Packets and Network Addresses
    • 15.4.2 Historical Network Classes
    • 15.4.3 Class A, B and C
    • 15.4.4 Network ID and Host ID
    • 15.4.5 Class D and E
    • 15.4.6 Classless Inter-Domain Routing
    • 15.4.7 Dotted-Decimal Notation
  • 15.5 DHCP
    • 15.5.1 Dynamic Addresses for Clients
    • 15.5.2 Static Addresses and DNS for Servers
    • 15.5.3 DHCP Client – Server Communications
    • 15.5.4 DHCP Message Exchange
    • 15.5.5 Lease Expiry
    • 15.5.6 DHCP to Assign Static Addresses
  • 15.6 Public and Private IPv4 Addresses
    • 15.6.1 Public Addresses
    • 15.6.2 Regional Internet Registries
    • 15.6.3 Unassigned or Private Addresses
  • 15.7 Network Address Translation
    • 15.7.1 Network Address Translator
    • 15.7.2 Outbound
    • 15.7.3 Inbound
    • 15.7.4 Advantages of NAT
    • 15.7.5 Implementation
  • 15.8 TCP and UDP
  • 15.9 IPv6
    • 15.9.1 Expanded Addressing Capabilities
    • 15.9.2 Header Simplification
    • 15.9.3 Improved Support for Extensions and Options
    • 15.9.4 Support for Traffic Management
    • 15.9.5 IPv6 Packet Format
  • 15.10 IPv6 Address Allocation and Address Types
    • 15.10.1 Internet Registry Identification
    • 15.10.2 Sites and Global Routing Prefix
    • 15.10.3 Interface ID
    • 15.10.4 Subnet ID
    • 15.10.5 Subnet Prefix
    • 15.10.6 IPv6 Address Types

16 MPLS and Carrier Networks

There are no Quality of Service mechanisms in the IP protocol, and so no way to guarantee performance. For guarantees, a traffic management system using a technique called virtual circuits is implemented with MPLS. This chapter covers Service Level Agreements and Class of Service (CoS), briefly reviews legacy technologies, then focuses on MPLS and how it is used to implement VPNs, prioritization and differentiated services, service integration and traffic aggregation.

  • 16.1 Introduction
    • 16.1.1 Overbooking
    • 16.1.2 Congestion, Contention and Packet Loss
    • 16.1.3 MPLS Traffic Management System
  • 16.2 Carrier Packet Network Basics
    • 16.2.1 Provider Edge (PE) and Customer Edge (CE)
    • 16.2.2 Access
    • 16.2.3 Advantages of Packet Networks
  • 16.3 Service Level Agreements
    • 16.3.1 Traffic Profile
    • 16.3.2 Contract
    • 16.3.3 Business Decisions
    • 16.3.4 Enforcement: Out of Profile Traffic
    • 16.3.5 Abusive Applications: Bit Torrent
  • 16.4 Provider Equipment at the Customer Premise
  • 16.5 Virtual Circuit Technologies
    • 16.5.1 Traffic Classes
    • 16.5.2 Traffic Class ID & Virtual Circuit ID
    • 16.5.3 Ingress Device: Packet Classification
    • 16.5.4 Forwarding Based on Class Number
    • 16.5.5 Differentiated Services
    • 16.5.6 SVCs and PVCs
  • 16.6 Packet-Switching using Virtual Circuits
    • 16.6.1 X.25 Network Structure and Operation
    • 16.6.2 Reliable Network Service: Guaranteed Delivery
    • 16.6.3 Connection-Oriented vs. Connectionless Network Service
  • 16.7 Frame Relay using Virtual Circuits
    • 16.7.1 Elimination of a Layer of Software
    • 16.7.2 Unreliable Service
    • 16.7.3 Network Structure and Operation
    • 16.7.4 No Guarantees for Voice
  • 16.8 ATM
    • 16.8.1 Future-Proof Technology (Not)
    • 16.8.2 ATM Cells
    • 16.8.3 Service Classes
  • 16.9 MPLS
    • 16.9.1 MPLS vs. TCP
    • 16.9.2 Forwarding Equivalence Class
    • 16.9.3 Labels
    • 16.9.4 Label-Switched Path
    • 16.9.5 Label Edge Routers
    • 16.9.6 IP User-Network Interface
    • 16.9.7 Label-Switching Routers
  • 16.10 MPLS VPN Service for Business Customers
    • 16.10.1 Private Network Service
    • 16.10.2 Virtual Private Network (VPN)
    • 16.10.3 Internet VPNs
    • 16.10.4 MPLS VPN
  • 16.11 MPLS and Diff-Serv to Support Class of Service
    • 16.11.1 DS Codepoints
    • 16.11.2 Assured Forwarding and Expedited Forwarding
  • 16.12 MPLS for Integrated Access
    • 16.12.1 SIP Trunking, VPN and Internet on One Access
  • 16.13 MPLS for Traffic Aggregation
    • 16.13.1 Label Stacking
  • 16.14 M is for Multiprotocol: Virtual Private LAN Service (VPLS)

17 The Internet

Let's not forget the Internet! This chapter provides a concise explanation of the Internet, reviewing past and present, Internet Service Providers (ISPs), who pays for it, TCP and IP, SMTP and MIME for e-mail, HTML, Web servers and browsers, the Domain Name System and more. The chapter concludes with the Internet as a business: wholesale transit and peering and Content Delivery Networks.

  • 17.1 A Network To Survive Nuclear War
    • 17.1.1 Unreliable, Connectionless Network Service
    • 17.1.2 Al Gore Invents the Internet
    • 17.1.3 Who Pays for the Internet?
    • 17.1.4 Primitive Beginnings
  • 17.2 The Inter-Net Protocol
    • 17.2.1 Gateways
    • 17.2.2 IP: Common Packet Format and Address Scheme
    • 17.2.3 Connectionless
    • 17.2.4 Unreliable
    • 17.2.5 Need for TCP
    • 17.2.6 Routing and ASes
  • 17.3 Internet Service Providers
    • 17.3.1 The Internet is a Business
    • 17.3.2 ISPs
    • 17.3.3 Interconnect, Peering and Transit
    • 17.3.4 Resellers
  • 17.4 World Wide Web
    • 17.4.1 Clients and Web Servers
    • 17.4.2 Hyperlinks and URLs
  • 17.5 Domain Name System
    • 17.5.1 Domain Zone Files
    • 17.5.2 Name Resolution
  • 17.6 Hypertext
    • 17.6.1 HTML
    • 17.6.2 HTTP
    • 17.6.3 SSL: Secure Socket Layer and HTTPS:
  • 17.7 MIME and Base-64 Encoding for Email Attachments
    • 17.7.1 Binary, Text and uuencode
    • 17.7.2 MIME
    • 17.7.3 Quoted-Printable
    • 17.7.4 Base64 Encoding
  • 17.8 Internet Telephony & VSPs
    • 17.8.1 VoIP Service Provider (VSP)
    • 17.8.2 Internet - PSTN Connection
    • 17.8.3 Adapters
    • 17.8.4 Cost Savings
  • 17.9 Internet VPNs
    • 17.9.1 Virtual Point-to-Point Connections
    • 17.9.2 IPsec and Tunnels
    • 17.9.3 Hardware

Appendix A T1

This Appendix covers T1 technology in detail. T1 is a copper-wire technology from the 1950s, that was called "high capacity" or "hi-cap" service. It is now old and slow in comparison to today's technologies. However, there are still many T1 circuits in service, so rather than deleting the chapter on T1 that was in previous editions of the book, it has been moved to the back of the book in the Fourth Edition. We cover T1's origins, concepts such as framing and AMI line codes, and understand what repeaters are for and why this is superior to analog. We'll also cover B8ZS and clear channels, HDSL, cross-connects, fractional T1 and CSU/DSUs.

  • A.1 T1 History and Applications
  • A.2 T1 Circuit Components
  • A.3 Operation
  • A.4 T1 Framing
    • A.4.1 Superframe Format
    • A.4.2 ESF
  • A.5 Pulses and Line Code: AMI
    • A.5.1 Repeaters
  • A.6 Synchronization: Bit-Robbing
    • A.6.1 56 kb/s for Data
  • A.7 B8ZS and 64 kb/s Clear Channels
  • A.8 How T1 Is Provided
    • A.8.1 HDSL
  • A.9 Fractional T1, DACS and Cross-Connects
  • A.10 Subrate Data Circuits 1.2 kb/s to 56 kb/s
    • A.10.1 CSUs, DSUs and CSU/DSUs

Appendix B Voice Services and Jargon

This appendix provides a summary and overview of legacy voice communication services from carriers, explaining jargon like Tie Lines, Voice VPNs, WATS and AIN.

  • B.1 Local Voice Services
    • B.1.1 POTS and Party Lines
    • B.1.2 CLASS Services
    • B.1.3 Local Measured Service
    • B.1.4 Public Coin Telephone Service
    • B.1.5 Directory Services
    • B.1.6 Business Services
    • B.1.7 Access
  • B.2 Long Distance Voice Services
    • B.2.1 Operator Services
    • B.2.2 Foreign Exchange
    • B.2.3 OPX: Off-Premise Extension
    • B.2.4 Tie Line
    • B.2.5 Private Networks
    • B.2.6 WATS
    • B.2.7 AIN Services
    • B.2.8 Virtual Private Voice Networks

Appendix C Acronyms and Abbreviations

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