Abstract: A mobile ad-hoc network (MANET) is a collection of mobile nodes, which communicate over radio. These networks have an important advantage; they do not require any existing infrastructure or central administration. Two nodes can communicate together as soon as they are in communication range. Two nodes apart from each other need the help of intermediate nodes relay their data. Mobile ad-hoc networks are suitable for temporary communication links. This flexibility, however, comes at a price. Communication is difficult to organize due to frequent topology changes. In this thesis, fundamental questions in regard to mobile ad-hoc networks, which are needed to realize and develop such networks are considered. While the difference between mobile ad-hoc networks and classical networks are minor, ad-hoc networks have inherently some properties, which make them much more difficult to handle. Especially, two aspects of ad-hoc networks make more intricate their realization: The first aspect is the used communication medium, which, compared to wired communication, has higher bit error rates. The other aspect is the dynamic network topology, which is caused by node mobility. These two problems of ad-hoc networks have effects on all communication layers. This thesis deals with two main issues in ad-hoc networking. Namely routing and automatic configuration. Routing Routing in ad-hoc networks is aggravated by the dynamic network topology. In the worst case the topology is changing continuously. To guarantee efficient data communication, it is necessary to transmit data packets over a shortest path. This requires high adaptability from routing algorithms. At the same time it is important to take into consideration, that the routing must be realized by all nodes in the ad-hoc network. This thesis presents a new on-demand routing algorithm based on ant algorithms named 'ant routing algorithm (ARA)' and evaluates its performance. Address configuration The second topic of this thesis is automatic configuration of ad-hoc networks, since zero configuration networking is also associated with ad-hoc networks. Many investigations assume, that each node in an ad-hoc network has an unique IP-address, but it is an open question how this can be performed. This thesis presents a distributed algorithm for the assignment of IP-addresses in ad-hoc networks and evaluates the protocol.
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