6.263/16.37 DATA NETWORKS

Tues & Thursdays 1:00 - 2:30
Room 32-124
Professor Eytan Modiano
Office hours: Monday 11 – 12am RM 33-412A or by appointment
Email: modiano@mit.edu



Administrative Information

Administrative Assistant
Julie Finn



This is a first class on the fundamentals of data communication networks, their architecture, principles of operations, and performance analyses. One goal will be to give some insight into the rationale of why networks are structured the way they are today and to understand the issues facing the designers of next-generation data networks. Much of the class will focus on network algorithms and their performance. Students are expected to have a strong mathematical background and an understanding of probability theory (6.041 is a pre-requisite.). Topics discussed will include: layered network architecture, Link Layer protocols, high-speed packet switching, queueing theory, Local Area Networks, and Wide Area Networking issues including routing and flow control.

Requirements & Grading

About one problem set per week (20% of grade)
Project (30% of grade)
Exam (50 %)


Prerequisites:  6.041, or an equivalent class in probability.


Bertsekas & Gallager, Data Networks (2nd Edition)

Supplementary Texts & References:

    • Computer Networks, Peterson and Davie
    • High performance communication networks, Walrand and Varaiya
    • Computer Networks by A.S. Tanenbaum
    • TCP/IP Illustrated by Stevens
    • Queueing Systems, Vol 1: Theory, by Leonard Kleinrock


The class project will involve reading one or two important research papers and reporting on them.