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UDP vs TCP. What are these ? What are their Differences, pros and cons ?

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closed as too broad by slhck Nov 22 '13 at 6:08

There are either too many possible answers, or good answers would be too long for this format. Please add details to narrow the answer set or to isolate an issue that can be answered in a few paragraphs.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

up vote 4 down vote accepted

TCP is the Transmission Control Protocol. It is a connection-oriented protocol meaning it will establish a session by means of 3-way handshake. TCP provides error checking although it comes at the cost of overhead traffic. TCP is best used with applications that need to maintain a constant connection, such as FTP or SSH.

UDP is the User Datagram Protocol. Unlike TCP, UDP is a connectionless protocol. It is much like when you send a letter in the mail. What I mean by this is there is no guarantee that you will receive your mail, you send it and hope it gets there (best-effort delivery). Since there isn't error checking like TCP, it is much faster, although more prone to errors. Due to it's speed it is ideal for time-critical applications such as games. Some streaming video applications will also use UDP for it's speed.

This is a very brief overview of the protocols, they go much much more in-depth than this. I would suggest reading into them more if you are curious as to the specifics and how they operate in a layered model.

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If I want to sent a Text with about 1000 words is it safe to use UDP for sending that text over a LAN network – SpongeBob SquarePants Feb 6 '11 at 7:57
If safe delivery is your concern I wouldn't even consider UDP. – John T Feb 6 '11 at 8:01
UDP is fine for 'safe delivery' but the responsibility for verifying the data transmitted shifts to the applications managing the data transfer, so everything would work as expected provided that your comms/transfer programs met the requirements for error checking and correcting. – Linker3000 Feb 6 '11 at 10:53

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