Lam, email: lam AT cs DOT utexas DOT
edu office hours:
Teaching assistant: Ms.
swati AT cs DOT utexas
DOT edu office: TA Desk 1, GDC 1.302
Tue 1-2:00 pm and
Wed 1-2:30 pm.
Teaching assistant(part-time): Mr. Zihao
Zhou email: zzhou
AT cs DOT utexas
DOT edu office: TA Desk 3, GDC 1.302
special office hours
(on days when programs are due):5-6:30 p.m. Wed (Oct. 9 and Nov. 6)
This course is an introduction to the subject of computer networks
emphasis on the Internet. The following topics will be covered:
network and protocol
communication and switching
application and transport
flow and congestion control
network layer and routing
link layer and local area
We will emphasize fundamental concepts and key ideas, and try to
minimize coverage of implementation details. However, some details are
unavoidable in a course on protocols and networking. Also, to understand why certain ideas
design decisions are better than others, there will be some amount of
mathematical performance analysis (in lectures, homework, as well as
The following coursework with a grade of at least C-: Computer
Science 311 or 311H or 313K or 313H, 314 or 314H or 315 or 315H, 310 or 310H
or 429 or 429H, 439 or 439H or 352 or 352H or 372 or 372H; and Mathematics
408C, 408K, or 408N.
J. F. Kurose and K. W. Ross, Computer Networking: A Top-Down Approach, 6th edition, Addison
2013. Reading assignments of selected chapters and sections in the text will be
posted on the class web page. I plan to cover the first five chapters of the
textbook (with omission of some sections).
sections from Chapter 6 and Chapter 8 will also be covered. Please
Chapter 1 of the textbook as soon as possible.
Lecture slides (pdf
files) are available on the class web page. (Note that some slides
may be revised and not finalized until the day after their use in a lecture.) Do not use laptops, cell
other electronic devices during class.
Course Averages and Letter Grades
Your course grade averages will be computed with the following
Homework assignments (five): 20%
labs (three): 2% for first, 5% for second, 5% for third
(two): 6% for first, 12% for second
Two in-class exams:
If you average 85% for the course, you are guaranteed a letter grade
of A- or better.
If you average 75% for the course, you are guaranteed a B- or better. I will
consider the distribution of course grades for the class as a whole and
give more A's and B's according to a curve.
Homework and Wireshark
assignments: Both homework and Wireshark
lab assignments will be
due at the beginning of class on due date. Late submissions will not be
accepted. (There will be a 5-minute grace period in case you arrive late
class. If you arrive within the first 5 minutes of
please locate the TA in the classroom and give your submission to her quietly.)
Note: Wireshark lab
assignments will be done
on your own PC or laptop.
Programming: The objective is for
you to learn how to use the sockets interface to
provide client-server communications. There will be two
assignments requiring the use of TCP and UDP socket calls.
You can do these
assignments using C or Python. Your programs will interact
CS356 server running on my UTCS linux
machine. (Some skeleton code for the programming solutions will
provided in C only.)
Exams: There are two in-class exams
(October 21, 2013 and December 2, 2013). Each is a closed-book
of 1 hour
15 minutes long. You are allowed one 8.5" x 11" page of notes (on
one side of paper only). You may also bring a
calculator. No access to any materials online, or in an electronic
device, is permitted.
You will be allowed to make up a missed exam only with prior
from the instructor. To get approval, you need a compelling reason.
policy: You can discuss homework and lab assignments with
classmates. Similarly, you can talk to fellow students about
concepts, data structures, and language constructs needed for
assignments. However, everyone must write up his/her own solutions
for submission, and everyone must write and test his/her own programs
individually. Do not look at or copy someone else's
any homework, lab, or programming assignment, including solutions by
a previous offering of this class. Please refer to the
Student Code of Conduct document for additional information.
Class web page & email announcements
All assignments, lecture slides, as well as special
announcements are posted on the class web page with the
URL: http://www.cs.utexas.edu/users/lam/cs356. I do not have a fixed schedule for posting updates, but it is a
to check the master
several times a week
for assignment due dates and exam dates.
You are responsible for downloading and printing the homework,
programming assignments from the class web page. There will be
hard-copy handouts of these in class.
The class web page will have links
to the TA web page, with information on office hours, homework solutions,
instructions and C skeleton code for programming assignments, etc. If you
have questions about homework, labs, exams, and programming, please email
the TA, or visit during her office hours. She will be responsible for grading homework, Wireshark
labs, and programming assignments as well as the two exams.
Occasionally, when there is an
urgent announcement, we
will email you. The TA will compile a list of student email
addresses from the
CS 356 class roster. If you would like such notices to be
delivered to a
different email address or you are not sure which email address of yours
the class roster, please notify the TA of your preferred email
soon as possible.
1. Students with disabilities may request appropriate academic
accommodations from the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement,
Services for Students with Disabilities, 512-471-6259,
2. By UT-Austin policy, you must notify the instructor of your pending
absence at least fourteen days prior to the date of observance of a
religious holy day. If you must miss a class, an examination, a work
assignment, or a project in order to observe a religious holy day, you will
be given an opportunity to complete the missed work within a reasonable time
after the absence.
Occupants of buildings on The
University of Texas at Austin campus are required to evacuate buildings when
a fire alarm is activated. Alarm activation or announcement requires exiting
and assembling outside.
Familiarize yourself with all exit doors of
each classroom and building you may occupy. Remember that the nearest exit
door may not be the one you used when entering the building.
requiring assistance in evacuation shall inform their instructor in writing
during the first week of class.
In the event of an evacuation, follow
the instruction of faculty or class instructors.
Do not re-enter a
building unless given instructions by the following: Austin Fire Department,
The University of Texas at Austin Police Department, or Fire Prevention