An example of using the protocol suite in network communications is the interaction between a web server and a web client. This interaction uses a number of protocols and standards in the process of exchanging information between them. The different protocols work together to ensure that the messages are received and understood by both parties. Examples of these protocols are:
- Application Protocol - Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) is a protocol that governs the way a web server and a web client interact. HTTP defines the content and formatting of the requests and responses that are exchanged between the client and server. Both the client and the web server software implement HTTP as part of the application. HTTP relies on other protocols to govern how the messages are transported between the client and server.
- Transport Protocol - Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) is the transport protocol that manages the individual conversations between web servers and web clients. TCP divides the HTTP messages into smaller pieces, called segments. These segments are sent between the web server and client processes running at the destination host. TCP is also responsible for controlling the size and rate at which messages are exchanged between the server and the client.
- Internet Protocol - IP is responsible for taking the formatted segments from TCP, encapsulating them into packets, assigning them the appropriate addresses, and delivering them across the best path to the destination host.
- Network Access Protocols - Network access protocols describe two primary functions, communication over a data link and the physical transmission of data on the network media. Data-link management protocols take the packets from IP and format them to be transmitted over the media. The standards and protocols for the physical media govern how the signals are sent and how they are interpreted by the receiving clients. An example of a network access protocol is Ethernet.