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Computer Networks (XC)

Credits Dept. Type Requirements
9.0 (7.2 ECTS) AC
  • Compulsory for DIE
SO - Prerequisite for DIE


Person in charge:  (-)

General goals

The aim of this subject is to for students to learn the basic concepts concerning communications between network terminals. Students must study all TCP/IP protocols, local area networks (LAN) architecture, and wide area networks (WAN) architecture. This subject focuses on protocols and algorithms related to network architecture and TCP/IP protocols; and the technological aspects of networks (planning and designing a local area network).

Specific goals


  1. Understand the basic mechanisms involved in sending information.
  2. Understand the architecture of LANs and WANs.
  3. Grasp the technological features of cabled LANs and Wireless LANs.
  4. Understand the basic aspects of TCP protocols/IP protocols: direction, basic routing, speed and flow control, error control, congestion control.
  5. Understand the way Internet works and how applications installed in terminals communicate.


  1. Students will learn how to plan and scale a LAN at both the physical level and in the choice of suitable LAN technology, bandwidth, siting of clients and servers, etc.
  2. Students will learn how to manage the IP address schema and become acquainted with aspects bearing on the dynamic assignment of IP addresses and the management of IP network names.
  3. Students will learn how to assign IP addresses at interfaces, choose and activate basic routing protocols (static and dynamic), and detect configuration errors etc. in IP routers.
  4. Know how to manage LAN technology: Ethernet and Wireless-LAN technology.
  5. Students will learn how to assess network protocols and performance.


  1. Students will learn how to plan and scale a small to medium-sized LAN.
  2. Students will acquire the skills needed to work in an Internet Service Provider, managing IP routers and addresses.
  3. Students will learn how to solve the problems of a company wishing to connect to the Internet.
  4. Ability to design systems, components and processes meeting certain needs, using the most appropriate methods, techniques and tools in each case.
  5. Ability to solve problems through the application of scientific and engineering methods.


Estimated time (hours):

T P L Alt Ext. L Stu A. time
Theory Problems Laboratory Other activities External Laboratory Study Additional time

1. Introduction
T      P      L      Alt    Ext. L Stu    A. time Total 
4,0 0 2,0 0 0 8,0 0 14,0
OSI and OSI and TCP/IP stack protocols.
Standards bodies.
Client-server paradigm.

2. Redes IP
T      P      L      Alt    Ext. L Stu    A. time Total 
16,0 4,0 10,0 0 5,0 32,0 0 67,0
IP functions and headers. IP addresses. IP functions (ARPs, ICMPs, etc.), DNS, IP routing, IP Access Lists.

3. Point-to-point protocols. Internet Transport Layer: UDP and TCP
T      P      L      Alt    Ext. L Stu    A. time Total 
10,0 4,0 4,0 0 2,0 21,0 0 41,0
Error and flow control (ARQs). UDP. TCP: State Graph, error control, flow and congestion control, sockets.

4. Local Arean Networks (LANs)
T      P      L      Alt    Ext. L Stu    A. time Total 
10,0 3,0 2,0 0 1,0 21,0 0 37,0
Arquitectura LAN. Topologies LAN. Protocols d'accés al medi. Ethernet: configuracions bāsicas, trames, CSMA/CD Ethernet commutada. VLANs. LANs sense fils.

5. Data transmission.
T      P      L      Alt    Ext. L Stu    A. time Total 
6,0 2,0 0 0 0 12,0 0 20,0
Signals. Digital transmission. Frequency spectrum and distortion. Perturbation of the medium. Digital codifications and modulations. Error correction.

Total per kind T      P      L      Alt    Ext. L Stu    A. time Total 
46,0 13,0 18,0 0 8,0 94,0 0 179,0
Avaluation additional hours 3,0
Total work hours for student 182,0

Docent Methodolgy

4 hours/week of theory in which the teacher will explain course concepts on the blackboard and provide examples/problems covering size and design considerations.

2 hours/week in the lab. Lab classes are used to tackle problems using either chalk and blackboard or the lab equipment (PCs, routers, switches, etc.). Each

2-hour class is self-contained, although it draws upon the knowledge learnt and skills acquired in previous sessions.

An exam is set in the last week of the course to assess students" ability to solve a problem using the lab equipment.

Evaluation Methodgy

C=test (held around week 8 or 9)

Nl=Lab grade

Ef=Final Exam

NF=Final grade

NF=0.20*Nl + 0.80*MAX{Ef;(0.15*C + 0.85*Ef)}

Basic Bibliography

  • Larry L. Peterson and Bruce S. Davie Computer networks : a systems approach, Morgan Kaufmann, 2003.
  • Gilbert Held Ethernet networks : design, implementation, operation, management, John Wiley & Sons, 1998.
  • W. Richard Stevens TCP/IP illustrated, Addison-Wesley, 1994-1996.
  • William Stallings Data and computer communications, Pearson Education, 2007.
  • Llorenį Cerda Alabern Xarxes de computadors : conceptes bāsics, Edicions UPC, 2007.

Complementary Bibliography

  • Liam B. Quinn, Richard G. Russell Fast Ethernet, John Wiley & sons, 1997.
  • W. Richard Stevens UNIX network programming, Prentice Hall, 1998-1999.
  • Douglas E. Comer Computer networks and internets : with Internet applications, Prentice-Hall, 2001.
  • Christian Huitema Routing in the internet, Prentice Hall PTR, 2000.

Web links


Previous capacities

Knowledge of UNIX at the system administrator level.


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