The required textbook for this course is Computer Networks: A Systems Approach (6th edition) by Peterson and Davie. Earlier editions are also acceptable, but the reading assignments will use section numbers from the 6th (online) edition. While each lecture will be supported by accompanying readings from the course text, the lectures may, from time to time, introduce material that is not in the textbook. You are expected to read the assigned portions of the textbook before coming to class, as they will serve as the basis for the in-class discussions.

Readings are not a substitute for lectures. You are responsible for all material covered in lecture, whether or not it appeared in any assigned readings.


This course will have roughly bi-weekly homework assignments, two substantial programming assignments, two in-class quizzes, and a final. Discussion sections will be held weekly to review the lecture material and answer questions about the readings, homeworks, and projects. Grades for this class will be based on:

  • 5% Homework
  • 30% Programming projects
  • 20% Quiz 1
  • 20% Quiz 2
  • 25% Final

Final grades will be curved.

No late assignments will be accepted. Exceptions for documented medical emergencies, death of an immediate family member, or other such life-altering situations must be requested from the instructor as soon as practical.


Date Topics Notes Readings
Fri 09/29 Class overview
Mon 10/02 Layers & Framing
Project 1a out 1.3, 2.3
Wed 10/04 Error handling
HW 1 out 2.4
Fri 10/06 Reliable transmission
1.5, 2.5
Mon 10/09 Flow Control
2.5, 5-5.2 (through Conn. Est. & Term.)
Wed 10/11 Congestion control
HW 1 due 6.3-4
Fri 10/13 TCP Congestion Control
Mon 10/16 Bridging
Project 1a due/1b out 3-3.1
Wed 10/18 From Networks to Internetworks
HW 2 out 3.2
Fri 10/20 Internetworking
Mon 10/23 Addressing
3.3 (Global Addresses)
Wed 10/25 Class cancelled
HW 2 due
Fri 10/27 Quiz 1
Mon 10/30 IPv6
Project 1b due 3.3.4 (Forwarding), 4.2
Wed 11/01 Naming
3.3.7 (DHCP), 9.3 (DNS)
Fri 11/03 Naming (cont)
3.3.6 (ARP), 9.3 (DNS)
Mon 11/06 Link-state Routing
Project 2a out 3.4 (Link State)
Wed 11/08 Distance-vector routing
HW 3 out 3.4 (Distance-Vector)
Fri 11/10 Veterans Day
Mon 11/13 Interdomain routing
Wed 11/15 Border Gateway Protocol
HW 3 due 4.1 (BGP)
Fri 11/17 Quiz 2
Mon 11/20 Router design
Project 2a due/2b out 3.5
Wed 11/22 Buffering and Scheduling
Fri 11/24 Thanksgiving
Mon 11/27 Traffic Management
Wed 11/29 Links and signaling
Fri 12/01 Modulation
HW 4 out 2.2
Mon 12/04 Media Access Control
Project 2b due 2.6
Wed 12/06 Ethernet
Fri 12/08 802.11
HW 4 due 2.7
Fri 12/15 Final Exam (8:00-11:00am)

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