Basic Networking Interview Questions

What is virtual path?

Along any transmission path from a given source to a given destination, a group of virtual circuits can be grouped together into what is called path.

What is virtual channel?

Virtual channel is normally a connection from one source to one destination, although multicast connections are also permitted. The other name for virtual channel is virtual circuit.

What is logical link control?

One of two sublayers of the data link layer of OSI reference model, as defined by the IEEE 802 standard. This sublayer is responsible for maintaining the link between computers when they are sending data across the physical network connection.

Why should you care about the OSI Reference Model?

It provides a framework for discussing network operations and design.

What is the difference between routable and non- routable protocols?

Routable protocols can work with a router and can be used to build large networks. Non-Routable protocols are designed to work on small, local networks and cannot be used with a router

What is MAU?

In token Ring , hub is called Multistation Access Unit(MAU).

Explain 5-4-3 rule

In a Ethernet network, between any two points on the network, there can be no more than five network segments or four repeaters, and of those five segments only three of segments can be populated.

What is the difference between TFTP and FTP application layer protocols?

The Trivial File Transfer Protocol (TFTP) allows a local host to obtain files from a remote host but does not provide reliability or security. It uses the fundamental packet delivery services offered by UDP.
The File Transfer Protocol (FTP) is the standard mechanism provided by TCP / IP for copying a file from one host to another. It uses the services offered by TCP and so is reliable and secure. It establishes two connections (virtual circuits) between the hosts, one for data transfer and another for control information.

What is the minimum and maximum length of the header in the TCP segment and IP datagram?

The header should have a minimum length of 20 bytes and can have a maximum length of 60 bytes.

What is difference between ARP and RARP?

The address resolution protocol (ARP) is used to associate the 32 bit IP address with the 48 bit physical address, used by a host or a router to find the physical address of another host on its network by sending a ARP query packet that includes the IP address of the receiver.
The reverse address resolution protocol (RARP) allows a host to discover its Internet address when it knows only its physical address.

What is ICMP?

ICMP is Internet Control Message Protocol, a network layer protocol of the TCP/IP suite used by hosts and gateways to send notification of datagram problems back to the sender. It uses the echo test / reply to test whether a destination is reachable and responding. It also handles both control and error messages.

What is Bandwidth?

Every line has an upper limit and a lower limit on the frequency of signals it can carry. This limited range is called the bandwidth.

Difference between bit rate and baud rate.

Bit rate is the number of bits transmitted during one second whereas baud rate refers to the number of signal units per second that are required to represent those bits.
Baud rate = bit rate / N
Where N is no-of-bits represented by each signal shift.

What is MAC address ?

The address for a device as it is identified at the Media Access Control (MAC) layer in the network architecture. MAC address is usually stored in ROM on the network adapter card and is unique.

What is attenuation?

The degeneration of a signal over distance on a network cable is called attenuation.

What is cladding?

A layer of a glass surrounding the center fiber of glass inside a fiber-optic cable.

What is RAID?

A method for providing fault tolerance by using multiple hard disk drives.


NETBIOS is a programming interface that allows I/O requests to be sent to and received from a remote computer and it hides the networking hardware from applications.
NETBEUI is NetBIOS extended user interface. A transport protocol designed by Microsoft and IBM for the use on small subnets.

What is redirector?

Redirector is software that intercepts file or prints I/O requests and translates them into network requests. This comes under presentation layer.

What is Beaconing?

The process that allows a network to self-repair networks problems. The stations on the network notify the other stations on the ring when they are not receiving the transmissions. Beaconing is used in Token ring and FDDI networks.

What is terminal emulation, in which layer it comes?

Telnet is also called as terminal emulation. It belongs to application layer.

What is frame relay, in which layer it comes?

Frame relay is a packet switching technology. It will operate in the data link layer.

What do you meant by "triple X" in Networks?

The function of PAD (Packet Assembler Disassembler) is described in a document known as X.3. The standard protocol has been defined between the terminal and the PAD, called X.28; another standard protocol exists between hte PAD and the network, called X.29. Together, these three recommendations are often called "triple X".

What is SAP?

Series of interface points that allow other computers to communicate with the other layers of network protocol stack.

What is subnet?

A generic term for section of a large networks usually separated by a bridge or router.

What is subnet mask?

It is a term that makes distinguish between network address and host address in IP address. Subnet mask value 0 defines host partition in IP address and value 1 – 255 defines Network address.