What is Attached Resource Computer Network (ARCNET)?

Attached Resource Computer Network (ARCNET): Here, we are going to learn about the Attached Resource Computer Network, its history, etc.
Submitted by Anushree Goswami, on January 09, 2021

ARCNET: Attached Resource Computer Network

ARCNET or ARCnet is an abbreviation of "Attached Resource Computer Network". It is a type of communication protocol for local area networks that makes available network services and commonly found in applications such as industrial control, building automation, transportation, robotics and gaming. ARCNET was the primary extensively available networking system for microcomputers; In the 1980s, it turned out to be well-accepted for office automation tasks. It was afterward applied to embedded systems where specific attributes of the protocol are particularly functional and helpful.


  • In 1976, ARCNET was designed and created by major development engineer John Murphy at Datapoint Corporation under Victor Poor and made known in public in 1977. It was at the beginning created to unite groups of their Datapoint 2200 terminals to have a discussion to a shared 8" floppy disk system.
  • It was the primary loosely coupled LAN-based clustering solution, making no supposition about the category of computers that would be linked or associated.
  • Up until the early-to-mid 1980s, ARCNET stayed proprietary. This did not become the source of apprehension at the time, as the majority of network architectures were proprietary.
  • The shift to non-proprietary, open systems started as a comeback to the supremacy and authority of International Business Machines (IBM) and its Systems Network Architecture (SNA).
  • In 1979, the Open Systems Interconnection Reference Model (OSI model) was prepared, issued and publicized.
  • Subsequently, in 1980, Digital, Intel and Xerox (the DIX consortium) prepared and issued an open standard for Ethernet that was quickly taken on as the foundation of standardization by the IEEE and the ISO.
  • In acknowledgment with respect to larger bandwidth requirements, and the confront of Ethernet, a new standard called ARCnet Plus was designed and created by Datapoint and launched in 1992.
  • On the other hand, by the time ARCnet Plus products were organized and all set for the market, Ethernet had covered up most part of the network market, and there was the minute incentive for users to shift back to ARCnet.
  • As an outcome, an extremely small amount of ARCnet Plus products were ever manufactured. Those that were manufactured, mostly by Datapoint, were costly, and rare to come across.
  • ARCNET was ultimately standardized as ANSI ARCNET 878.1. It came into sight when the name changed from ARCnet to ARCNET.
    Datapoint ultimately discovered itself in economic problem and in due course shifted into video conferencing and afterward custom programming in the embedded market.

Reference: ARCNET

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