Corbina Telecom, the Russian universal telecom operator, has launched the Internet2 project in Moscow, which will result in the union of Corbina Telecom customers – both those already working with this company and future ones – into a high-speed data network with much wider capabilities compared to previous generation networks. On December 15, 2004, the company organized a press conference at which several features of this network were demonstrated.
But more on that later, at first a little history.
Back in 1968, an organization called the ARPA (Advanced Research Projects Agency), a division of the US Department of Defense, built the first computer network, which was based on the principles still used in the modern Internet. It consisted of 4 computers. Over the next ten years, many organizations and universities have joined the ARPANET Network.
By 1978, all the basic protocols had been developed, which are still used on the Internet. The main one is the IP version 4 protocol (IP is the “Internet Protocol”). In 1982, the European UNIX Network (EUnet) was founded. Prior to this, only the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom were included in the Network.
The domain name system appeared in 1984. In 1989, the number of connected computers reached one hundred thousand. By the end of the 80s, more than ten countries were connected to the Network.
In 1991, WWW technology was developed. In 1991, Russia joined the Internet. By 1992, there were over a million computers on the web. In 1993, the Web grew three and a half thousand (!) Times.
In 1994, the Internet turned 25 years old. Since then, the Network has reached global distribution, but has not fundamentally changed. Many new technologies were invented, communication channels improved, the number of computers increased to tens of millions, and the number of users to hundreds of millions. As a result, the Internet has become well known, it has become commercially profitable not only for those who provide access to the Network. Already in 1994, it was possible to order pizza at home or a taxi via the Internet (of course, we are talking about the West).
Technically, in 2004, the Internet has not gone so far compared to the end of the 60s. The modern Internet has the following significant problems inherited from ARPANET:
Small address space – in the modern Internet, only 32-bit addresses are used (four bytes per address), that is, there may be about 4 billion addresses, which is not only less than the world’s population, but also much less than the number of electronic devices. Not to mention the fact that technologically (due to network segmentation on the “subnet”) it is impossible to use all 4 billion addresses. Indeed, in the late 60s, few could have imagined that every cell phone would have a need to have its own network address. Very soon, a situation may arise when IP addresses will not be enough for everyone. Strictly speaking, they are already in short supply.
The disadvantages of IPv4 include the lack of an automatic address configuration mechanism. Ask any system administrator, and he will tell you what a useful opportunity this would be, especially when you have to transfer the corporate network from one provider to another. No, of course, there are external services for automatic configuration (DHCP), but this mechanism is not sewn into the protocol – it is put as an additional service, i.e. also requires additional configuration, etc.
Low performance – The Internet was created in the years when the fastest channels had a few kilobits per second of performance. Therefore, the computational processes that laid the foundation of the Web in the 60s are not so optimal according to today’s concepts. An example of a failed algorithmic solution in IPv4 is packet fragmentation. The fact is that too large ethernet packets (their maximum volume is 64 kb) can be split into several, since many network technologies operate with smaller blocks. This action is often performed by intermediate routers through which information passes. The problem is that packet separation consumes a lot of the system resources of the router. Thus, this process not only complicates the transfer of files of a specific user, but also consumes additional resources of intermediate routers.
Inability to transmit information sensitive to delays. Voice and video transmission over the modern Internet is always a “challenge” because the Internet does not guarantee the quality of service. Voice traffic transmitted over the Internet comes with random delays, at random intervals, with losses, which causes voice distortion and VoIP characteristic “croaking”. The fact is that when the IPv 4 protocol was developed, almost all network interaction was reduced to the exchange of ordinary files.