TCP/IP, Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol or IP Protocol Suite, is a system in which networks can communicate with each other on the internet using TCP/IP ports.

TCP/IP is the most commonly used system to transmit data using the internet. To send data across to a different network via the internet, the computer that is transmitting data and the computer that is receiving data will have a copy of TCP/IP built in. Transmitting data between networks using TCP/IP requires both networks to be connected until the transmission is complete.

Before data can be transferred, a network must check that the receiving network has acknowledged the request for connection, known as the TCP/IP handshake. TCP and IP have different functions. Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) works by breaking the data being sent over the internet, that being a file or message, into small packages. These packages will then be given TCP and IP headers with information about the packages such as, version of protocol, length, the quantity of packets overall, the source and destination addresses, checksum and a Time To Live (TTL) data. The receiving network’s TCP will receive and assemble the packages to create the original data. The second part, consists of the Internet Protocol (IP) directing the data packages with an address making sure the packages are sent to the correct destination.

TCP networking is a reliable service, and monitors and restores any lost IP packets.

Other application protocols like Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) uses TCP/IP to access the internet.

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