Interface Message Processor

What Does Interface Message Processor Mean?

The interface message processor (IMP) was the first packet-router. It was part of the ARPANET, the the precusor to today’s Internet. IMPs monitored network status and gathered statistics. They were also the heart of the ARPANET from its launch until it was decomissioned in 1989. They also represent the first generation of the gateways that are now known as routers.


Techopedia Explains Interface Message Processor

The interfact message processor proviced an interface to the ARPANET that was independent and could be used by any system. This laid the groundwork for the modern Internet and the network architecture that makes it possible.

A contract for the development of IMP was awarded to consulting company Bolt Baranek and Newman in 1968. What they developed essentially consisted of long-distance leased telephone circuits between pairs of IMPs. Host computers were connected to the IMP at the host site and network users were connected to their local host. A set of procols specified the conventions for communication between hosts connected to different IMPs.


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Margaret Rouse

Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…