A given transmission on a communications channel between two machines can occur in several different ways. The transmission is characterized by:
- the direction of the exchanges
- the transmission mode: the number of bits sent simultaneously
- synchronization between the transmitter and receiver
Types of Transmission mode
- Half Duplex
- Full Duplex
A simplex connection is a connection in which the data flows in only one direction, from the transmitter to the receiver. This type of connection is useful if the data do not need to flow in both directions (for example, from your computer to the printer or from the mouse to your computer...).
A half-duplex connection (sometimes called an alternating connection or semi-duplex) is a connection in which the data flows in one direction or the other, but not both at the same time. With this type of connection, each end of the connection transmits in turn. This type of connection makes it possible to have bidirectional communications using the full capacity of the line.
A full-duplex connection is a connection in which the data flow in both directions simultaneously. Each end of the line can thus transmit and receive at the same time, which means that the bandwidth is divided in two for each direction of data transmission if the same transmission medium is used for both directions of transmission.