Packet

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pack·et / ˈpakit/ • n. 1. a paper or cardboard container, typically one in which goods are packed to be sold: a packet of cigarettes. ∎  the contents of such a container. ∎  a block of data transmitted across a network. 2. (also packet boat) dated a ship traveling at regular intervals between two ports, originally for the conveyance of mail. • v. (-et·ed , -et·ing ) [tr.] make up into or wrap up in a packet: packet a basket of take-out and head for Gooseberry Beach.

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packet A group of bits of fixed maximum size and well-defined format that is switched and transmitted as a composite whole through a packet switching network. Any message that exceeds the maximum size is partitioned and carried as several packets.

Typically each packet contains addressing information defining the source and the destination of the packet, control information defining the type of data carried in the packet, and some form of checksum to verify that the packet has been correctly received. In many systems the packet may hold several hundred bytes and the internal structure can vary from one packet to the next. See also cell, frame.

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packet small pack or package XVI; short for p.-boat XVIII. f. PACK1 + -ET; perh. of AN. formation.
Hence packet-boat vessel plying between two ports, mail-boat. XVII; orig. boat maintained for the conveyance of ‘the packet’ of state papers.

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Packet

a small pack, package, or parcel; a small collection, set, or lotWilkes.

Examples : packet of friends, 1766; of letters, 1530; of lies; of miracles, 1613; of photographs, 1871; of plants, 1803; of rumour, 1828.