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Difference Between Unicast and Multicast

Unicast vs Multicast

Unicast and multicast are mainly used in the broadcasting and Internet industry. These two are used when channelling video and audio outputs.

What is unicast? It is just one-to-one communication that takes place between the client and the server. In unicast, the Internet protocol methods, such as, “TCP” or Transmission Control Protocol and “UDP” or User Datagram Protocol are used. When a user uses the Windows Media Player, he or she has direct contact with the server. Each of the users using the unicast system utilises additional bandwidth.

What is multicast? It is a multi-communication level and mainly multicasts enabled routers used for broadcasting. In multicast, there is no direct link between the user and the server. When using Windows Media Player, the user does not have any direct link with the server. Instead, once the user starts to use Windows Media Player, an .nsc or Netshow channel is generated which is then delivered to the user from the server.

When comparing unicast and multicast, the former is more practical as only a small section of the Internet is multicast enabled.

Unlike multicast, unicast is point-to-point transmission. In unicast, one packet is transmitted to only one destination at a time. On the other hand, multicast sends packets to multiple destinations which is represented by a group address. So here there are multiple receivers in multicast. As the same packet is sent to multiple nodes with a single copy of the packet, there is a reduction of the overall network and server load.

Summary:

1.Unicast is just one-to-one communication that takes place between the client and the server.
2.Multicast is a multi-communication level and mainly multicast enabled routers are used for broadcasting.
3.When a user uses the Windows Media Player, he or she has direct contact with the server. Each of the users using a unicast system utilises additional bandwidth.
4.In multicast, there is no direct link between the user and the server.
5.When comparing unicast and multicast, the former is more practical as only a small section of the Internet is multicast enabled.
6.In unicast, the Internet protocol methods, such as, “TCP” or Transmission Control Protocol and “UDP” or User Datagram Protocol are used.
7.In multicast, once the user starts to use Windows Media Player, an .nsc or Netshow channel is generated which is then delivered to the user from the server.


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