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Ethernet: The Definitive Guide, 2nd Edition by Joann Zimmerman, Charles E. Spurgeon

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Chapter 2. IEEE Ethernet Standards

Ethernet is standardized by the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). The IEEE (pronounced “Eye-triple-E”) is headquartered in New York City and has more than 425,000 members in over 160 countries. One of the largest worldwide professional organizations, the IEEE organizes conferences and publishes more than 150 transactions, journals, and magazines annually. The IEEE also develops standards in a broad range of industries, including telecommunications, information technology, nanotechnology, and power generation products and services.

The Ethernet standards produced by the IEEE Standards Association (IEEE-SA) are just one group of the more than 1,400 standards and projects under development. The IEEE-SA is composed of volunteers from the community of IEEE engineers and is not a formal part of any government. However, the IEEE standards are formally recognized by national standards groups (e.g., American ANSI, German DIN) and international standards organizations (e.g., ISO, IEC).

The process of developing IEEE standards involves engineers from industry, government, and other domains who volunteer their time to work together within the IEEE-SA framework to produce standards. In order to develop a set of specifications that participants agree will provide an open and interoperable standard that all vendors can use, the engineers are required to reach a consensus on the technical issues. The IEEE standards ensure that vendors can ...

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