Communication Networks

Course Description

Introduction to communication networks. Network architectures, classification and topology. Communication channel and information packet. Communication protocols, layered models: Open System Interconnection Reference Model (OSI RM), Internet model. IP protocol and other network layer protocols in Internet. Organisation of IP-based networks. Transport layer protocols, TCP and UDP. Host naming, Internet domains. Information and multimedia services and Internet applications. Local area network, wide area network, internetworking. User services and business applications, billing and cost accounting. Public network, academic and research network.

General Competencies

Students will gain fundamental knowledge of communication networks, network architecture and protocols, with special emphasis on local area networks, Internet and public networks. Students will gain knowledge and skills enabling them understanding of communication network design problems and professional approach to them. They will develop learning skills necessary to continue to undertake further study of communication networks.

Learning Outcomes

  1. define concept, architecture and organisation of communication networks
  2. explain how communication networks operate and their functionality
  3. apply knowledge about communication networks and protocols
  4. analyze protocol functions and services, as well as protocol stacks in order to select appropriate ones
  5. analyze organization of public and private networks based on IP protocol
  6. define secutity threats and available solutions in the Internet
  7. design network models including local area networks, Internet subnetworks and Internet access
  8. evaluate communication solutions based on TCP/IP protocol stack

Forms of Teaching


Lectures, with lecture notes and presentations available in advance on the web.


Midterm exam and final exam.

Laboratory Work

Complex laboratory assignments that include building network models, defining communication and system parameters, simulation and emulation of different usage scenarios, and measurement and evaluation of network traffic.

Experimental Exercises

Selected network models implemented using software tool IMUNES are demosntrated during lectures.


Regular consultation hours with all lectureres, four tems every week.

Acquisition of Skills

Literature search on communication networks. Building software environment for communication network design and analysis.

Programming Exercises

Personal software package IMUNES. Network modelling, simulation and emulation using software tool IMUNES.

Other Forms of Group and Self Study

Homeworks related to IP networks and Internet services.

Grading Method

Continuous Assessment Exam
Type Threshold Percent of Grade Threshold Percent of Grade
Laboratory Exercises 20 % 15 % 20 % 15 %
Homeworks 0 % 10 % 0 % 10 %
Class participation 0 % 5 % 0 % 5 %
Attendance 0 % 5 % 0 % 5 %
Mid Term Exam: Written 0 % 30 % 0 %
Final Exam: Written 0 % 35 %
Exam: Written 0 % 65 %

All laboratory assignements should be completed succefully.

Week by Week Schedule

  1. Introduction to communication networks and basic network architectures.
  2. Physical layer, transmission media and data link layer in communication networks. Layer functions and design issues.
  3. Communication protocols in data link layer: basic models and communication efficiency. Local area network, media access and logical link. Case study: local area network implementation based on Ethernet/IEEE 802.3.
  4. Network layer: services, packet switching and routing, principles of congestion control. Internet architecture and internetworking. Case study: simulation and emulation of IP networks by using software tool IMUNES (Integrated MUltiprotocol Network Emulator/Simulator).
  5. Network layer in Internet. Organisation of Internet. Internet Protocol and other network layer protocols. IP datagram format, IP addressing. Routing in Internet, routing protocols.
  6. Internetworking: basic principles and network equipment. Interconnecting local area networks. Internetworking in network layer, connecting IP networks and subnetworks. Case study: interconnection models, emulation and simulation using IMUNES.
  7. Transport layer: services and functionality. Transport layer in Internet. Transmission Control Protocol. User Datagram Protocol. Case study: modelling transport services using IMUNES.
  8. Session, presentation and application layers. Services and application protocols in Internet. Selected Internet services and related protocols: Domain Name System, World Wide Web, electronic mail. Case study: modelling Internet services using IMUNES.
  9. World Wide Web and electronic mail: communication protocols in TCP/IP stack. Introduction to network security and security mechanisms. Basic cryptography, symmetric cryptography, public key cryptography. digital signature.
  10. Network security. Security architecture of Internet. Security protocols. Secure extension of Internet Protocol, IPsec. Secure socket layer, SSL. Selected solutions: virtual private network, firewall.
  11. Service implementation and internetworking of private and public networks in Internet, Internet telephony, voice over IP. Fixed and mobile public networks. Case studies: academic and research network, voice and data networks.
  12. Wireless local area networks. High-speed local and access networks, evolution of Ethernet.
  13. Internet access, Internet users and Internet service providers. Access models and solutions: protocol PPP, network address translation. Fixed Internet access through public switched telephone network and integrated services digital network. Broadband access. Mobile Internet access: GPRS, EDGE, UMTS, HSPA, LTE/SAE. Internet challenges and future development.
  14. -
  15. -

Study Programmes

University undergraduate
Computer Engineering (module)
(5. semester)
Computer Science (module)
(5. semester)
Information Processing (module)
(5. semester)
Software Engineering and Information Systems (module)
(5. semester)
Telecommunication and Informatics (module)
(5. semester)


A. Bažant, G. Gledec, Ž. Ilić, G. Ježić, M. Kos, M. Kunštić, I. Lovrek, M. Matijašević, B. Mikac, V. Sinković (2004.), Osnovne arhitekture mreža, Element, Zagreb
Andrew S. Tanenbaum, David J. Wetherall (2010.), Computer Networks, 5/e, Prentice Hall
Fred Halsall (2005.), Computer Networking and the Internet (5th Edition), Addison Wesley
James F. Kurose, Keith W. Ross (2017.), Computer Networking: A Top-Down Approach Featuring the Internet, 7/e, Pearson
Larry L. Peterson, Bruce S. Davie (2011.), Computer Networks: A Systems Approach, 5/e, Morgan Kaufmann Publishers

Associate Lecturers

Laboratory exercises


ID 34272
  Winter semester
L3 English Level
L1 e-Learning

Grading System

85 Excellent
70 Very Good
60 Good
50 Acceptable