CST 415  Computer Networks  (4)                        Fall 2013

Lecture - MWF    
Section 1
2:00 - 3:00
OW 142

Lab - Th

Section 1
11:00 - 2:00
PV 120

Jim Long (PV 179;  885-1580)

Office Hours    
11:00 - 12:00
PV 179
1:00 - 2:00
PV 179


10:00 - 11:00
PV 179


Catalog Description

A course in computer network theory and applications with a focus on the TCP/IP Protocol Suite.

Prerequisite Courses

CST 336  pass with a C or better.

Required Materials

Text Book:

Book Cover Internetworking With TCP/IP Volume 1: Principles Protocols, and Architecture, 5th edition, 2006. ISBN 0-13-187671-6


Computer based networking has become a dependency of our society Daily business operations are based on the exchange and modification of information over the Internet as a major pipeline for information flow. The sound understanding of this system is crucial to the development of computer systems, from the hardware layer up through the end user applications. This course will be an eye-opener where students will see the complexity and elegance of communication protocol as well as downfall and danger of open systems definition and development. Computer networks are necessary and dangerous. A firm foundation in networks and current implementations will advance computer development by allowing system development with networking and Internet aspects in mind.

Course Entry Requirements

  1. The student will have an understanding programming C++.
  2. The student will have an understanding of assembly language programming.
  3. The student will have an understanding of large scale software projects and a feeling for network technologies in enterprise scale software systems.

Course Overview and Objectives

CST 415 introduces the concepts of computer networking especially related to the TCP/IP standard and Internet related protocols. The different layers network communications will be explained and explored.  At the completion of this course, students will:

  1. Understand network topologies, communication protocol layering and the use of layering to bridge heterogeneous protocol networks.
  2. Understand the layers of the ISO OSI protocol stack and the mapping of the TCP/IP protocol into the OSI 7-Layer model.
  3. Understand issues related to addressing at the different protocol layers and understand the use in addressing in different routing techniques.
  4. Understand different networking topologies and the application of networking standards in the different topologies.
  5. Understand routing algorithms and the application of different routing paradigms at network boundaries and internal networking structures.
  6. Understand the internal operations of the TCP/IP protocol suite.
  7. Be able to identify packets as captured raw on a network connection.
  8. Be able to apply programming constructs to capture, analyze, construct and transmit network packets.
  9. Be able to perform simple network address analysis and identify addressing components in a heterogeneous network environment.
  10. Be able to research and understand typical network standards documents for use in networking problem solving and network traffic analysis.

Assignment Grading Policy

Every student is responsible for all information contained in the assigned reading material. Questions for exams will be taken from the text material, lecture notes, handouts, homework assignments, and laboratory exercises. Students should attend all class sessions. Homework will be handed in electronically and is due by midnight of the due date. Programming assignments must be received in a format that can be easily used by the professor and/or grading assistants.  IT IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE STUDENT TO MAKE SURE ALL ASSIGNMENTS TURNED IN ARE ACCOUNTED FOR AND GRADED. If there are any circumstances related to the due date of assignments, turn assignments in early rather than late. Students must attend the lab to receive credit for in-lab exercises.

Programs will be graded on:
1.        Code style, format, organization, delivery                 25%
2.        Documentation                                                        25%
3.        Proper Execution                                                     50%

Code that has no documentation or has not been modularized will receive a "0" as an overall score.

Homework hand-in requirements:
All handed-in homework must be sent in the following format:

    1. Zip up all .asm, .c, .cpp, .h, .dsw, and .dsp or make files, etc. required to build the project..
    2. In the archive, also include a readme file that lists all files included in the archive with a brief description of each file. The readme file should also contain installation instructions and instructions for running the program.
    3. The archive should also include any other deliverables as called out in the homework assignment write-up (e.g. design documents, project write-ups, etc.).
    4. The archive will be attached to an email with subject line:

CST415 HW Assignment #x  first name and last name of team members.
Late assignments will not be accepted unless approved in advance by the instructor.

Point Breakdown:


Midterm #1

  Midterm #2
  HW Questions
Labs and Programming

  Ethernet Frame
  IP Packet
  ARP Packet
  ICMP Packet
  UDP Packet
  Final Deliverable


Performance Evaluation

Your grade will be based on percentage of total points possible:

<= 90%
80% <= x < 90%
70% <= x < 80%
60% <= x < 70%
x < 60%

Any student with a disability who anticipates a need for accommodation in this course is
encouraged to talk with the instructor about his/her needs as soon as possible.