Connection Oriented and Connectionless Services

A connection-oriented service is a service that guarantees delivery of information to that service whether it is FTP or HTTP. A service that is guaranteed will provide reliability, ensure segments are delivered and reassembled in order, and are error free. When data cannot be sent reliably or in order, an error is sent to the user's application layer. These connection-orientated protocols, such as TCP, establish a connection to a destination before any form of data is transferred.

A telephone service is a good example of a connection-oriented service. Before you can start a conversation, the call setup and data transfer phases must be completed. After those stages have completed, you can start talking. When you finish the conversation, the call termination phase takes place. Each of these phases in a telephone call are characteristics of connection-oriented services. Connection-oriented services consist of:

► Data transfer phase

► Termination phase

In contrast, a connectionless service packages the data information to be sent and sends it without determining the path to the destination without an acknowledgment. No setup or path determination is carried out. Instead, the higher layers guarantee delivery.

Table 2.2 summarizes the main characteristics of connection-oriented and connectionless services and presents examples for each.

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