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Peer to Peer (P2P) networking or computing is a shared application architecture that couple tasks or workloads between peers. Peers are privileged equally, as well as included participants in the application. They form a network node of peer to peer.Peer make a portion of their resources like the processing power, disk storage or network bandwidth, that is available directly to participants networks, without central joint work by servers or hosts. Peers are both suppliers and consumers of resources, in which there is division between the supply and consumer. The new P2P systems are trending beyond the period of peers doing similar things and as well sharing resources, and looking for different peers that can make up unique and capable resources to virtual community and as a result, empowers it to engage in multiple tasks that exceed the tasks accomplished by individual peers. The first P2P shared system platform was the Pipes Platform by PeerLogic. It was first licensed in year 1990 in Texas. The P2P systems were used for application domains, and it was spread across by system Napster launched in year 1999.


The movement of peer to peer gave room to million internet users to link directly, making up groups and merging to become user created search engines and file systems. The basic idea of peer to peer was seen earlier in software systems and discussion networks, dated back to the principles in Request for Comments. The vision of Tim Berner Lee about World Wide Web was similar to peer to peer network in such that every web user would be editor and contributor, creating and connecting contents to make up an interlink web links. The P2P idea started in 1960s, when ARPNET was established to distribute files between US research facilities and other hosts. As internet precursor, ARPNET was a successful client server network where every node requests and serve contents. But ARPNET was not self organized and lacked the able power to offer context means or content based routing that exceeds simple address routes. So, a shared messaging system that is connected as architecture of peer to peer was formed namely USENET. It was developed in year 1979 and enforced a decentralized control model. The basic Model is client server model from the user or client view that provides an approach that is self organized to newsgroup services.


A peer to peer network is designed around the notion equal peer nodes at the same time working as both clients and servers to other network nodes. This style of network arrangement is different from the client server model that communicates to locate from a central server.


Peer to peer networks generally invented some virtual overlay networks above the physical topology network, that node in the overlay makes up a subset of the physical nodes. Data is transferred through the IP/TCP network, but peers are able to communicate at the application directly, through the links of the logical overlay. Overlays are used for peering and indexing within the network, while the networks can be classified as structured or unstructured. Unstructured network of peer to peer do not implement certain structure on the overlay network bin design, but they are created by connected nodes that are randomly formed. Because they are not imposed with structure globally, they are easy to locate and allow for optimization to different parts of the overlay. Structured peer to peer network is well organized in a certain topology, and it allows nodes to search for network for files or resources in its protocol. The most popular P2P structured type imposed a shared hash table (DHT), consisting of a variant of frequent hash to be used to assign ownership of each files to a peer.


This is the combination of peer to peer and clients’ server models. A general hybrid model is to have a central server that locates each peers, an example is Spotify. There are many hybrid models, and all of them make tradeoff between the centralized function that is offered by a structured network and the unstructured network of P2P affords the nodes equally.


Though P2P networks can be used for legal purposes, right owners have aimed P2P over the implications with sharing copyright materials. P2P network involves transferring data from one user to the other without an intermediate server. There have been involvements of companies in different legal cases, in US, over copyright law issues.

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