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TCP/IP Illustrated, Volume 1: The Protocols by W. Richard Stevens

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Chapter 16. BOOTP: Bootstrap Protocol

Introduction

In Chapter 5 we described how a diskless system, with no knowledge of its IP address, can determine its IP address using RARP when it is bootstrapped. There are two problems with RARP: (1) the only thing returned is the IP address, and (2) since RARP uses a link-layer broadcast, RARP requests are not forwarded by routers (necessitating an RARP server on every physical network). This chapter describes an alternative method for a diskless system to bootstrap itself, called the Bootstrap Protocol, or BOOTP.

BOOTP uses UDP and normally works in conjunction with TFTP (Chapter 15). RFC 951 [Croft and Gilmore 1985] is the official specification for BOOTP with clarifications given in RFC 1542 [Wimer 1993 ...

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