Software emulation of networking components
Software emulation of local area and wide area networks provides an alternative method for the design of such networks and for analyzing their performance. Emulation of bridges and routers that link networks together may provide valuable information regarding network congestion, network storms and the like before putting expensive hardware into place. Such an emulation also enables students taking a networking course to develop their own client-server applications and to visualize the basic functioning of the UDP/IP and RIP protocols.This thesis builds on the emulated local area network, Metanet, created by a previous graduate student. It adds the capability of attaching routers and bridges to multiple local and non-local emulated networks so that data may be transferred between two hosts on different segments of the same LAN (via an emulated bridge) or two different networks altogether (via an emulated router). The machines running the Metanet software should support UNIX which has Berkeley's Socket interface as emulated networks on different physical machines utilize this interface for communicating. A comparison of the new networking capabilities of Metanet and other experimental systems like XINU and MINIX is researched.