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comp.dcom.cell-relay FAQ: ATM and related technologies (part 1/8)

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Archive-name: cell-relay-faq/part1
Last-modified: 1997/10/06

See reader questions & answers on this topic! - Help others by sharing your knowledge
NOTE!!!! If you are reading this FAQ as stored on some automated FAQ archiv=
site you would be better off to follow the above http link to the most rece=
official version of this FAQ.  Not only may it be more current but it will
be better formatted than what you are viewing now! :-)

comp.dcom.cell-relay FAQ: ATM, SMDS, and related technologies (Rev 1997/10/=
Part 1 - Introduction, Contributors and Topic A of FAQ
Copyright =A9 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997 Carl Symborski

Cell Relay FAQ - Introduction

The Cell Relay FAQ is posted periodically in multiple parts as a Usenet
News FAQ under the title comp.dcom.cell-relay FAQ: ATM, SMDS, and related
technologies. This FAQ is also maintained as a collection of WEB pages
( The WEB
pages will generally be more current than the posted FAQ. In fact this FAQ
is maintained as WEB pages then posted as a traditional Usenet News FAQ
every few months.

This article is the first of eight articles which contain general informati=
and also answers to some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) which are related=
or have been seen in comp.dcom.cell-relay. This FAQ provides information of=
general interest to both new and experienced readers. It is posted to the=
Usenet comp.dcom.cell-relay, comp.answers, and news.answers news groups eve=
few months.

This FAQ reflects cell-relay traffic through August 1997.

If you have any additions, corrections, or suggestions for improvement to
this FAQ, please send them to

I will accept suggestions for questions to be added to the FAQ, but please
be aware that I will be more receptive to questions that are accompanied by
answers. :-)


Carl Symborski
Vice President - Engineering
SALIX Technologies, Inc.

Carl's home page is at


Cell Relay FAQ - Copyright Notice and Disclaimer

The Cell Relay FAQ is posted periodically in multiple parts as a Usenet
News FAQ under the title comp.dcom.cell-relay FAQ: ATM, SMDS, and related
technologies. This FAQ is also maintained as a collection of WEB pages.

Both versions are Copyright =A9 1992-1997 Carl Symborski and may be freely
redistributed in their entirety provided that this copyright notice is not
removed. They may not be sold for profit or incorporated in commercial
documents or CD-ROMs without the written permission of Carl Symborski.
Permission is expressly granted for this document to be made available for
file transfer from installations offering unrestricted anonymous file
transfer on the Internet. This article is provided as is without any
express or implied warranty. Nothing in this article represents the views
of the University Of Maryland.



This FAQ is a collective work which has been compiled by and is maintained
by Carl Symborski. The information contained herein has been gathered from
a variety of sources. Most derived from a consensus of postings on the
cell-relay group. I'd like to acknowledge the following individuals who
have provided direct contributions to this FAQ, either by posting to the
cell-relay list or by private EMail correspondance. If you would like to
claim responsibility for a particular item, please let me
( know.

   * David Aschkenasy,
   * Andy Barnhart,
   * Reto Beeler,
   * Kingston Duffie,
   * Tim Dwight,
   * Kevin Faulkner,
   * Mark W Garrett,
   * A. Gavras,
   * Thomas Gemmer,
   * Rajeev Gupta,
   * Charles M. Heard,
   * Derek Hill,
   * Fahad Hoymany,
   * YongJun Im,
   * Mark Jeffrey,
   * Gary C. Kessler,
   * Mark Laubach,
   * Matthew Maa,
   * Davide Mandato,
   * Bert Manfredi,
   * George Marshall,
   * Keith McCloghrie,
   * Hakan Mitts,
   * Tim Moors,
   * Chris O'Neill,
   * Christian Paetz,
   * Craig Partridge,
   * Tony Primavera,
   * Vijay Rangarajan
   * Allen Robel,
   * Lee D. Rothstein,
   * Jukka Saukkonen,
   * George Schmitt,
   * Brian Skerry,
   * Bill Stallings,
   * Mark Stover,
   * Carl Symborski,
   * Kaj Tesink,
   * M V Tharaneedharan,
   * Paul Tichy,
   * Al Varney,
   * Chris Wilcox,
   * Robert Wilcox,
   * Mark Williams,
   * Dr. Jeffrey M. Wills,
   * Mark ___ [full name unknown],


Posting history of the Cell Relay FAQ Usenet News FAQ (ASCII) version and
the (WEB page HTML) version...


Rev 1992/10/01  - Initial release, sections A, B, C, D, E
Rev 1993/03/01  - Miscellaneous changes and additions
Rev 1993/07/13  - Miscellaneous changes and additions. First time approved =
                  an official USENET FAQ.  Cross posted to comp.answers
                  and news.answers
Rev 1993/09/16  - Miscellaneous changes and additions
Rev 1993/11/30  - Miscellaneous changes and additions, added section F
Rev 1994/04/25  - Lots of additions and changes, added section G
Rev 1994/09/06  - Miscellaneous changes and additions.  First time split in=
                  two parts as total size of previous version exceeded 65k
                  bytes.  Apparently many Internet providers truncate email=
Rev 1995/01/29  - Lots of changes and additions.  Reorganized introduction
                  and acknowledgements into one section.
Rev 1995/08/11  - Translation to HTML for better WWW FAQ pages at the Cell-
                  relay Retreat.  Will now maintain the HTML as well as ASC=
                  versions. However, the most current will be the HTML and =
                  plain ASCII version will be posted less frequently.
Rev 1995/11/22  - Updated the HTML version and posting of the ASCII version=
Rev 1996/08/30  - Totally revamped the HTML version to optimize for WEB use=
                  access.  Major content revisions to bring up-to-date.
Rev 1997/08/30  - A full year of periodic updates directly to the online HT=
                  version warrants proclamation of a release "milestone".
Rev 1997/10/06  - Converted HTML to ASCII and posted as plain ASCII FAQ.  F=
                  will be posted in eight (8) parts.  Added an easy downloa=
                  option for this FAQ to the Cell-Relay retreat. =20
                  Access via the HTML FAQ.


The Cell Relay FAQ

Master Table Of Contents

   * Introduction
   * Contributers to this FAQ and Posting History
   * TOPIC A: COMP.DCOM.CELL-RELAY Basic Information
   * TOPIC B: Industry Forums And Vendor Information
   * TOPIC C: ATM References
   * TOPIC D: ATM Technology Questions
   * TOPIC E: ATM vs. XYZ Technology
   * TOPIC F: Freely Available Reference Implementations
   * TOPIC G: Flames And Recurring Holy Wars

                 Click here for ASCII version of this FAQ.


              This FAQ accessed 66,251 times since May 1995.





  A1. What is the CELL-RELAY group?
  A2. What is the archive site for this group?
  A3. Is there a parallel mailing list for this group?
  A4. What other mailing lists are related to ATM?
  A5. Where can I get the current version of this FAQ?
  A6. Other Cell-Relay related FAQs?


                       What is the CELL-RELAY group?

The purpose of this group is to provide a forum for the submission of
articles and inquiries dealing with networks using Cell Relay as a
transport; including local, metropolitan, and wide area networks. The name
cell-relay was chosen as a compromise over objections to the name "ATM"
during the creation of this group. The acronym ATM in the context of this
group stands for Asynchronous Transfer Mode, not Automatic Teller Machines
or Adobe Type Manager. The term "cell" in cell-relay is taken to mean a
small, fixed sized, information bearing unit that provides the foundation
for transport and multiplexing of user traffic. This topic area is not
related to cellular phones or intra-cellular organisms.


                 Where is the archive site for this group?

The archives for comp.dcom.cell-relay are available on the Web at this URL:

The archives for comp.dcom.cell-relay are available via anonymous ftp to as:


with subdirectories for each year, and group messages split out by month.

I must point out that there is a wealth of other cell-relay related
information in this archive. See subject C3 of this FAQ. Just to be crystal
clear (hopefully): gets you the Cell Relay Retreat
web page gets you the Frame Relay Forum's web page
(which contains HTMLized versions and MS Word (Mac/PC), Postscript versions
of their Implementation Agreements among other things).


              Is there a parallel mailing list for this group?

A direct mailing list has been setup which is a mirror of the USEnet
newsgroup comp.dcom.cell-relay. This mailing list runs using majordomo, an
automated list processor. To send mail TO the list, send it to:

To Subscribe to the cell-relay list send your request to:

Your request SHOULD not contain anything in the Subject: line and MUST
contain the following as the first line of the message body

subscribe cell-relay "insert your email address here"


unsubscribe cell-relay


                What other mailing lists are related to ATM?

There are several lists described below. One is for an IETF group working
on the issue of Internetworking Over NBMA Working Group (ion). The ION list
completely replaced what was known as the IP over ATM group (ip-atm). There
work is on-going and primarily focused on the internetworking issues.
General ATM questions and blue-skying are inappropriate and discouraged by
the members on the list.

The ion list email address is:

Please send all changes requests to:

The is a majordomo server. It understands "subscribe" and "unsubscribe"
commands sent in the body of the message. For help, send the word "help" in
the message body. To contact the list owner, send email to

The mailing list archives can be found on the WWW at

There is an FTP archive at for important
working group documents, including the charter, meeting minutes, and this

The working group charter and meeting minutes can also be found in the
/ietf/ion/ directory on and mirrors, such as Both and support
gopher access as well as anonymous FTP.

Also of possible interest is the mailing list for the SMDS special interest
group (SIG) Technical Committee. To send mail TO the list, send it to:

To un/subscribe, or send other notes to the list management, use the


              Where can I get the current version of this FAQ?

Occasionally someone writes asking how to get the most recent copy of this
FAQ. Apparently this text often reaches folks who do not have handy USENET
or even FTP access! For those who do and are just unfamiliar with surfing
the Internet, the most recent FAQ can be retrieved in several ways:

The preferred method is to use our WWW URL to get the HTML version:

For those who want the ASCII version of this FAQ, the most up-to-date
version I have is available for FTP download directly from the site. To make this easy I have added a "download
FAQ" page to the online HTML version of this FAQ. Access this option from
the mail page of the FAQ using the URL indicated above. The manual way to
do this via FTP is:


log in as "annomyous", then get the files /pub/cell-relay/faq/part1.txt
through part8.txt

But wait, there is more! This FAQ is archived automatically by the usenet
news services and can be accessed via FTP:


in the files /usenet/news.answers/comp/cell-relay-faq/part1.Z through

Also via FTP:


in the files /pub/usenet-by-group/news.answers/cell-relay-faq/part1 and

Finally, if you do not have direct access by FTP, you can obtain a copy via
email: send a message to with the following lines
in it:

  send usenet/news.answers/cell-relay-faq/part1
  send usenet/news.answers/cell-relay-faq/part2
  send usenet/news.answers/cell-relay-faq/part3
  send usenet/news.answers/cell-relay-faq/part4
  send usenet/news.answers/cell-relay-faq/part5
  send usenet/news.answers/cell-relay-faq/part6
  send usenet/news.answers/cell-relay-faq/part7
  send usenet/news.answers/cell-relay-faq/part8

Good Luck!


                       Other Cell-Relay related FAQs?

The ATM Forum has a FAQ which is focused on Forum related recommendations,
activities, services, etc. Their FAQ can be found on the ATM Forum's WWW
server in

Other FAQs include:


Other WEB pages which deal with some aspect of ATM technology and not
mentioned elsewhere in this FAQ:

   * http://www.itr.UniSA.Edu.AU/~dstowww/atm_security/ is a Web page
     covering the field of ATM security.
   * is a Web page which
     Grenville Armitage maintains containing pointers to MARS related

Additionally there is an excellent list of pointers to other ATM FAQs and
technology sites on the WEB at:

Finally, the cell-relay retreat itself has pointers to various reference
sources at


User Contributions:

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