Carrier Sense Multiple Access/with Collision Avoidance (CSMA/CA)
Definition - What does Carrier Sense Multiple Access/with Collision Avoidance (CSMA/CA) mean?
CSMA/CA increases network traffic as it requires sending out a signal to the network even before transmitting any real data. This is to listen for any collision scenarios in the network and to inform other devices not to transmit.
Techopedia explains Carrier Sense Multiple Access/with Collision Avoidance (CSMA/CA)
If the broadcast channel is detected as "busy," the node holds the transmission, waits for a random time frame and then checks all over again to find out whether the channel is free. This time frame is referred to as the backoff factor. The backoff factor is counted down using a backoff counter.
If the channel is free when the backoff counter gets to zero, the node sends the data packet. If the channel is not clear even when the backoff counter reaches zero, the backoff factor is scheduled yet again, and the entire scenario is repeated. This is repeated until the channel becomes available. As soon as the channel becomes available, the data packet is transmitted. Once the data is received by the receiving node, it sends back an acknowledgment packet (ACK) after a short while. If the ACK is not received, it is assumed that the packet is lost and then a retransmission is set up.
The additional signaling makes CSMA/CA a slower access technique when compared to the CSMA/CD technique used in Ethernet networking.