Politecnico di Torino
Politecnico di Torino
Politecnico di Torino
Academic Year 2017/18
Internet and communications lab
1st degree and Bachelor-level of the Bologna process in Electronic Engineering - Torino
1st degree and Bachelor-level of the Bologna process in Mechanical Engineering - Torino
1st degree and Bachelor-level of the Bologna process in Automotive Engineering - Torino
Teacher Status SSD Les Ex Lab Tut Years teaching
Mellia Marco ORARIO RICEVIMENTO O2 ING-INF/03 24 0 36 0 3
SSD CFU Activities Area context
ING-INF/03 6 D - A scelta dello studente A scelta dello studente
Subject fundamentals
Internet and communication systems are nowadays commonly used in every engineering disciplines, from Bioengineering to Computer Engineering, from Electronic to Management. This course aims at offering engineering students the critical knowledge and ability in correctly understanding these systems, by offering them a practical and experimental approach.
The whole course focuses around experimental laboratories where students are asked to run experiments in controlled environment to understand the limits and constraints applications a user faces when using the Internet and communication systems in general.
The course offers two sequential tracks: Internet laboratory, and Communication laboratory. The first focuses on experiments to understand what happens when we use the Internet, and which constraints we face when using it. The second one focuses more on the physical implications of digital transmission systems.
Each student will take both tracks. The first one is closer to students enrolled in Engineering degrees where applications are more relevant (Computer Engineers, Biomedical Engineering, Automotive Engineering, Cinema and Media Engineering), while the second is closer to Engineering degrees where the physical effects are studied in detail (Electronic Engineering, Physical Engineering and Electrical Engineering). The course can be of interest also for all students outside these degrees but with a minimal level of prerequisites. Students will work in small groups of three elements each, so to eventually compensate and recover lacks of competences.
At the end of the course, the student will become familiar with the basic of Internet technologies, and of Communication systems. The goal is to give the student both a practical and critical capacity of addressing problems, with a correct experimental methodology.
Working in groups, the student will also get used to the team working and sharing methodologies.
Expected learning outcomes
This course is divided into two tracks: Internet Laboratory and Communication Laboratory. Each student will take both tracks, in sequence.
Each track will offer
10 hours (1 ECTS) of theoretical lessons in which lab problems will be discussed and some basic theory introduced
20 hours (3 ECTS) of practical laboratories where students will employ PCs and Internet devices in the Politecnico Laboratories (LAIB) or using their own PC.
There are 3+3=6 ECTS in total.
Internet Laboratory focuses on practical experiments to get the student used to typical Internet configuration problems and applications. Students will work using Linux running on a common PC. By setting up a Local Area Network, interconnecting PCs and using common applications that run on the Internet, students will go through experimental laboratories of increasing complexity. The laboratories will cover from simple "ping" experiments, to more complicated analysis of a "portscan" attack at a local area network.
At the end of the course, the students will have the practical knowledge to configure and troubleshooting Local Area Networks, and understand the problems that applications and application developers faces when using the Internet.

Communication laboratory aims at offering students the fundamental knowledge of digital transmission systems. Using simulation programs, students will be able to study telecommunication systems under a controlled environment, and understand design choices and parameter definition. At the end of the course, students will be able to run a practical experiment following the principles of experimental science.
Prerequisites / Assumed knowledge
Students should have some basic knowledge of the Internet and of Communications systems. For the Internet laboratory track, students should be familiar with TCP/IP protocols (Ethernet, ARP, IP, TCP, UDP, HTTP): the professor will recall those basic requirements during theoretical classes.
For the Communication laboratory track, students will be introduced to the required knowledge during classes.
The Internet laboratory track focuses on practical laboratories where both the configuration of a Local Area Network, and the understanding of the Internet application principle and constraints will be faced. In particular, the labs will focus on
Configuration of a Local Area Network with PCs, IP addresses configuration, and connectivity check, focusing on ARP and ICMP protocols (8 hours)
Traffic analysis using sniffers (wireshark), focusing on TCP, UDP, HTTP and web browsing protocols (8 hours)
Analysis of traffic during a portscan attack in a LAN (4 hours)
Engineering of a "speedtest" system to measure the throughput offered by a Internet connection (10 hours)

The Communication laboratory track will focus on:
Simulation of digital transmission systems using Matlab (20 hours)
Experimental measurements of a data transmission system using a wireless or a wired channel (10 hours)
Delivery modes
The course will be held for most of the time in the laboratories at Politecnico (LAIB).
Professor will offer 10+10 hours of theoretical classes explaining the experiments, and giving the basic knowledge of the systems analyzed.
Students will work in groups of three members in the lab by running experiments under the supervision of the professor (20+20 hours). Students are asked to prepare laboratory reports on specific topics.
Texts, readings, handouts and other learning resources
All teaching materials will be made available by the professors, including the description of the laboratories. Professors will give access to video recordings of other courses for students that lack of basic technical information to follow the labs.
Assessment and grading criteria
Each student will work in a group. Each group will be asked to prepare and deliver one lab report for each track on selected topics (group report). The report grade will be the same for all members of the group.
Additionally to the group report, each student must prepare and submit a short report for each track (individual report) on a topic indicated by the professor.

Each student will finally discuss the reports during an individual oral exam. The oral exam must be sufficient to pass the exam.
The final grade for each track will be a weighted average of the three scores: 60% of the group report score (maximum vote 30 cum laude), 10% of the individual report (maximum grade - 30), and 30% of the oral examination (maximum grade 30 cum laude).
The final grade will be the average of the grades of each lab track.

Programma definitivo per l'A.A.2017/18

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