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10GB Ethernet is Full Duplex Only.

Xmultiple's Engineering Department

 

10 gigabit Ethernet defines only full duplex point to point links which are generally connected by network switches. Half duplex operation and hubs do not exist in 10GbE. A full-duplex (FDX), or sometimes double-duplex system, allows communication in both directions, and, unlike half-duplex, allows this to happen simultaneously. Land-line telephone networks are full-duplex, since they allow both callers to speak and be heard at the same time. A good analogy for a full-duplex system would be a two-lane road with one lane for each direction.

Two-way radios can be designed as full-duplex systems, transmitting on one frequency and receiving on another. This is also called frequency-division duplex. Frequency-division duplex systems can be extended to farther distances using pairs of simple repeater stations, because the communications transmitted on any one frequency always travel in the same direction.

Full-duplex Ethernet connections work by making simultaneous use of two physical pairs of twisted cable (which are inside the jacket), wherein one pair is used for receiving packets and one pair is used for sending packets (two pairs per direction for some types of Ethernet), to a directly connected device. This effectively makes the cable itself a collision-free environment and doubles the maximum data capacity that can be supported by the connection.

There are several benefits to using full-duplex over half-duplex. First, time is not wasted, since no frames need to be retransmitted, as there are no collisions. Second, the full data capacity is available in both directions because the send and receive functions are separated. Third, stations (or nodes) do not have to wait until others complete their transmission, since there is only one transmitter for each twisted pair.


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