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TCP/IP Guide by Charles M. Kozierok

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DHCP General Operation and the Client Finite State Machine

Dynamic address allocation is probably the most important new capability introduced by DHCP. In the previous chapter, I discussed the significance of the change from IP address ownership to IP address leasing. I also provided a high-level look of the activities involved in leasing, by providing an overview of the DHCP lease life cycle.

An overview of this sort is useful to get a general handle on how leases work, but to really understand the mechanics of DHCP address assignment and client/server communication, you need more details on how the devices behave and the messages they send. One tool often employed by networking engineers to describe a protocol is a theoretical model called a ...

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