Recap the Internet history

This is a Quick reference Guide to know the History of Internet, created by the member of UK’s Broadband Comparison website-


George Stibitz
  • George Robert Stibitz used a teletype machine to send and receive instructions from New Hampshire to a complex number calculator in New York.

Vannevar Bush
  • The proposal for a system that can store lot of information allowing users to create their own paths and links, called ‘Memex,’ was submitted by Vannevar Bush.

ARPA team
  • Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) was formed by the Department of Defense directive-US (DOD) in February 1958, to ensure the country’s technological leadership.
  • ARPA developed a program to receive continuous information from computer memory, through telephone lines called ‘SAGE.’

  • Echo,’ the first communication satellite was launched.

Leonard Kleinrock
  • The first paper about ‘Packet Switching Theory,’ was submitted by Leonard Kleinrock. He was also known as the “Father of Internet”.

  • Information Processing Techniques Office (IPTO) was formed and funded the ARPA for its research in Command and Control Systems. J.C.R.Licklider became the first director of IPTO, later followed by Sutherland, Taylor and Roberts.

Lawrence Roberts

Noel Morris

Tom Van Vleck
  • Ted Nelson coined the term ‘Hypertext,’ for the arrangement of annotations around a document.
  • Tom Van Vleck and Noel Morris created the first Mail command for the Compatible Time-Sharing System (CTSS) while at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
  • The first Wide Area Network between MIT’s Lincoln Lab TX-2 and System Development Corporation’s Q-32, in California, was setup by Thomas Marill and Lawrence Roberts.

Donald davies

Charles Herzfeld

Bob Taylor
  • Fiber Optic cable was used for voice transmission in telephone lines.
  • Data was then termed as ‘Packets’ and ‘Packet Switching’ by Donald Davies a Welsh Scientist. He was the co-inventor of Packet Switching.
  • Charles Herzfeld accepted to provide funds for Bob Taylor from ARPA for the networking experiment that would connect many universities, which later became ARPANET.

Wesley Clark
  • The idea of using a dedicated hardware to perform network tasks was proposed by Wesley Clark. This idea was developed as Interface Message Processors (IMPs), nothing but modern day routers.

BBN technologies
  • The National Physical Laboratory (NPL) of Great Britain tested the concept of Packet Switching.
  • Larry Roberts from ARPA released a Request for Quotation (RFQ) to construct a network of 4 IMPs, which could be extended till 19.
  • While Industrial Giants like IBM and ATT did not come forward to bid, a consulting company called Bolt Beranek and Newman (BBN) Technologies located in Cambridge, proposed and won the IMP contract. It was promised to receive $1 million to turn the theory into a working model.

Charlie Kline

4 nodes of Arpa network. dec-1969
  • The first connection was made from UCLA to the SRI machine at a speed limit of 50 Kbps.
  • BNN installed the first ARPANET IMP node (IMP-1) at UCLA.
  • The second node was set up at the Stanford Research Institute (SRI).
  • The third IMP was installed at the University of California in Santa Barbara.
  • The fourth device was installed at the University of Utah.
  • The first message tried for transmission was the word “Log-in” by Charlie Kline with the help of his professor Leonard Kleinrock. But the system crashed after transmitting the first two letters ‘L’ and ‘O.’
  • The issue was fixed and the system successfully transmitted the message later on 21st November.

Steve Crocker
  • ARPANET installed its fifth node at BBN’s headquarters.
  • The hosts of the ARPANET started using the Network Control Protocol (NCP) which was created by the Network Working Group (NWG) lead, Steve Crocker.
  • The same year ARPANET had 15 sites with a total of 23 hosts. They were UCLA, UCSB, SRI, University of Utah, Harvard, BBN, UIU(C), Lincoln Lab, CWRU, NASA/Ames, MIT, RAND, SDC, Stanford, CMU. These sites had an average transamission of about 700,000 packets per day.

Ray Tomilson
  • Ray Tomlinson from BBN created the first software (SNGMSG and READMAIL) that could send email between computers and ‘Email Quickly’ became the most popular application in the network.
  • Bob Kahn demonstrated about ARPANET between 40 machines at the International Conference that was held for Computer Communications.
  • A commercial version of ARPANET called the TELNET becomes the first Public Packet Data Service.
  • ARPANET gets connected to international hosts.
  • File transfer Protocol (FTP) came into existence and worked using a Client Server Architecture.

Vint Cerf

Bob Kahn
  • Bob Kahn and Vint Cerf published a paper titled “Protocol for the Packet Network Interconnection”, which was later established as Transmission Control Protocol (TCP).
  • Later the ARPANET had 62 computers attached to it.

Arpa network
  • ARPANET created its first mailing list called the MSG-Group and the proposal for research in communication on early ARPANET was sent by Steve Walker of ARPA (IPTO).
  • The email program with facilities to reply, forward and filing was developed by John Vittal.

Jimmy Carter
  • Jimmy Carter, the 39th President of the United States and Walter Mondale used emails every day during their campaign, when the cost for a single message was $4.
  • The first head of the state to send an e-mail message was the Queen of England, Elizabeth II.

Dale Hetherington

Gary Thuerk

Danny Cohen
  • Vint Cerf, Steve Crocker, and Danny Cohen separated TCP’s routing functions into a separate protocol called the Internet Protocol (IP) but the error handling and data gram functions remained with TCP.
  • Gary Thuerk sent the first unsolicited email message to almost 400 people across the ARPANET. It was an invitation for the west coast users, for a demonstration of Digital Equipment Corporation’s new Dec-system-20 computer.

Michael Aldrich
  • Internet Configuration Control Board (ICCB) was established by DARPA to help the process of creating gateways between the hosts and the network.
  • The First ever emoticon was sent in a message to a MSG Group by Kevin Mackenzie. It was “-)” which means ‘Tongue in Cheek.’
  • The idea of bulletin board was expanded to create Usenet, by 2 graduate students from North Carolina and this spread discussion on many topics.
  • Michael Aldrich invented the concept of ‘Online Shopping.’

  • The ARPANET stopped functioning for several hours as all the routing processes in all of the IMPs crashed and one of them corrupted the routing table.
  • Tim Berners Lee proposed a project based on Hyper text and built a prototype that he named as ‘ENQUIRE.’

Ted Nelson
  • Ted Nelson conceptualized ‘Xanadu,’ which was a central pay-per-document hypertext database, encompassing all written information.
  • The RFC 791 was released. It defines the Internet Protocol version 4 (Ipv4).

Scott E Fahlman

Drew Major
  • The ARPANET had 200 hosts.
  • The Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) and Internet Protocol (IP), was established as the protocol suite for ARPANET. The cut over date was set to January 1st 1983.
  • Drew Major, Kyle Powell and Dale Neibaur demonstrated the first PC LAN in the National Computer Conference. This software eventually became Novell’s Netware.
  • The ubiquitous Smiley 🙂 was proposed by Scott E Fahlman, to indicate humor in message board posts.

Jon Postel

Paul Mockapetris

Mike Muuss
  • The number of ARPANET hosts increased to 500.
  • The Internet was made real when ARPANET was split into Military and Civilian sections.
  • The entire ARPANET switched from NCP to IP. The transition happened smoothly.
  • The first automated DNS was run by Jon Postel and Paul Mockapetris, from the University of Southern California. This helped users to use human readable names for machines instead of using the machine’s physical address.
  • The Ping command was written by Mike Muuss, while he was in the US Army Ballistics Research Laboratory.

Sandra Lerner

Leo Bosack
  • The number of Internet hosts increased to 1000.
  • Cisco Systems Inc, was formed by the couple Leo Bosack and Sandra Lerner.

Larry Brilliant

Stewart Brand
  • Larry Brilliant of Networking Technologies International and Stewart Brand of the Point Foundation started the Whole Earth ‘Lectronic Link (WELL) with Matthew McClure as the Director. The customers were charged $8 per hour and plus $2 for every extra hour.

Brain virus
  • The number of Internet hosts increased to 5000.
  • The Brain virus or Pakistani flu virus started to spread in the internet and affected the boot sector of storage media.

Jeff Case

Martin Schoffstall
  • The number of Internet hosts broke to 10,000.
  • The Simple Gateway Monitoring Protocol (SGMP) was presented by Jeff Case, Mark Fedor, Martin Schoffstall, and James Davin. To great excitement, there was a major Internet outage during the presentation, which showed the necessity of the system. This protocol later evolved as Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP).

Robert Morris Jr

Jarkko Oikarinen

Bernard Daines

Van Jacobson
  • After a conversation with Steve Deering of Stanford University, Van Jacobson wrote the “Traceroute,” from the Lawrence Berkeley National Labs.
  • The first Ethernet switch was created by Bernard Daines, which added Ethernet support to Northern Telecom, carrier class telephone switches.
  • The NSFNET backbone was upgraded to DS-1 (1.544 Mbps) links, which was able to handle more than75 million packets a day.
  • Jarkko Oikarinen from the University of Oulu-Finland, wrote the Internet Relay Chat (IRC).
  • Robert Morris Jr., released the Internet worm which affected almost 6,000 hosts of the 60,000 hosts in the Internet. CERT(Computer-Emergency-Response-Team) was later formed by DARPA as a response to concerns raised by the worm.

Tim Berners Lee
  • The number of Internet hosts broke to 100,000.
  • The IAB consolidated its list of task forces into two groups, the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) and the Internet Research Task Force (IRTF). The IETF (one of the original 10 Task Forces) was responsible for the ‘Developments and Standards,’ while the smaller IRTF focused on longer-range research.
  • The first gateway between private electronic mail carriers and the Internet was established. CompuServe was connected through Ohio State University and MCI was connected through the Corporation for National Research Initiative.
  • Tim Berners Lee proposed his first proposal for World Wide Web (www), to aid the sharing of information between teams of researchers while at CERN.
  • Point to Point Protocol (PPP), specification was released in RFC 1134. All the dial-up Internet users used PPP to connect to the Internet.

Col Needham

Peter Scott
  • Peter Deutsch, Alan Emtage, and Bill Heelan released ‘Archie,’ while at McGill.
  • The Internet Toaster which was created by Simon Hackett and John Romkey made its appearances at Interop.
  • The ARPANET ceased to exist.
  • Tim Berners Lee created the first browser called the ‘World Wide Web.’
  • Hytelnet was introduced by Peter Scott.
  • Internet movie data base (IMDB) was created by Col Needham, a Hewlett Packard Engineer.

Philip Zimmerman

Brewster Kahle
  • The number of Internet hosts broke to 600,000.
  • The NSFNET backbone was upgraded to DS-3 (44.736 Mbps) as the traffic passed to 1 trillion bytes and 10 billion packets per month.
  • Brewster Kahle invented the Wide Area Information Servers (WAIS).
  • Philip Zimmerman released Pretty Good Privacy (PGP).
  • The world’s first web cam was introduced in the Trojan Room Coffee Machine.
  • Line mode browser (www) was released to limited number of audience on priam vax,rs6000, and sun v4.
  • Paul Lindner, Farhad Anklesaria, and Mark McCahill from the University of Minnesota announced about the Gopher.
  • The mailing lists www-interest (now www-announce) and were started.

Jean Armour Polly
  • The number of Internet hosts broke to 1 million with almost 50 web pages.
  • The World Bank started using the Internet.
  • The term ‘Surfing the Net’ was first used by Jean Armour Polly while writing a paper on Internet use.
  • The Internet Activities Board (IAB) met and decided to build a new version of IP out of CLNP.
  • The first IAB- IPv6 draft was withdrawn during an IETF meeting.
  • Rick Gates started the Internet Hunt contest.
  • The University of Nevada released a gopherspace search tool called ‘Veronica.’

Marc Andressen
  • The number of Internet hosts increased to 2 million.
  • The White House and United Nations started using the Internet.
  • WinSock 1.1 was released. WinSock standardized the APIs that were used to create Windows based TCP/IP applications. This was started by Geoff Arnold and Martin Hall during Interop in 1991.
  • The first version of Marc Andreessen‘s ‘Mosaic for X,’ was released by NCSA.
  • There were about 50 HTTP servers.
  • WWW (Port-80 HTTP) traffic reported 0.1% of NSF backbone traffic.
  • NCSA Mosaic was released for Macintosh and Windows.
  • Later the same year, the Web (HTTP – TCP Port-80) traffic took 1% of NSF backbone bandwidth.
  • HTTP servers increased to 500.
  • Marc Andressen left the NCSA and started to work for a small software company.

David Filo

Jerry Yang
  • The NSFNET backbone was upgraded to OC-3 (155mbps) links and the traffic passed to 10 trillion bytes per month.
  • First Virtual,’ the worlds first cyber bank was opened.
  • The Mosaic Communications Corp was formed by Marc Andressen and Jim Clark, which is now called as the Netscape Communications.
  • The number of Internet hosts increased to 3 million.
  • YAHOO, was found by two Stanford PhD students, Jerry Yang and David Filo.
  • The ARPANET / Internet celebrated its 25th anniversary.
  • Network Solutions Inc. reported that it was registering domain names at the rate of 2,000 per month.
  • The first version of Netscape web browser (version 0.9 Beta) was released by Mosaic Communications Corporation.
  • National Science Foundation Advisory Committee recommended to implement the user-fee system for registering domain names.
  • W3C had been created by Tim Berners Lee and Al Vezza. The first meeting of the World-Wide Web Consortium (W3C) was held in Cambridge.
  • The first macro virus was found in a Microsoft Word Document.
  • The number of Internet hosts broke to 4 million.
  • HTTP packets passed FTP traffic, as it is the largest volume Internet protocol.
  • The Apache web server project was started.
  • The HotJava Web browser was created by Sun Microsystems.
  • The NSF and NSI announced that domain registration will not be free anymore. According to the plan, new registrants should have to pay a $100 fee for a two-year registration and thereafter $50 per year. Organizations registered prior to September 14, 1995 were charged $50 as a annual fee on the anniversary of their initial registration. EDU domains were paid by the NSF.
  • RFC 1883– ‘Internet Protocol Version 6 (IPv6),’ specification was released.

Larry Page and Sergy Brin
  • The number of Internet hosts broke to 9 million.
  • Larry Page and Sergey Brin started to work on a search engine called BackRub, as it analyses a ‘back link’ pointing to a given website. The search engine was then renamed as ‘Google.’
  • The Debt Collection Improvement Act (DCIA), was provisioned with Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) which allowed to complete financial transactions via the web.
  • The number of Internet hosts broke to 16 million.
  • One human error made the DNS tables to be corrupted, especially .net and .com domains. This prevented from reaching most of the domain names.
  • Netscape Communications Corporation was acquired by American Online Inc, for a stock transaction valued at $4.2 billion.
  • The International Telecommunication Union agreed with the technical standards for the V.90 protocol used in 56K modems.
  • Microsoft bought Hotmail for $400 million.
  • Stamps were allowed to be downloaded from the web by the US Postal Service.
  • Google Inc. was formed on September 7, 1998.
  • The two millionth domain name ( was registered.
  • The IEEE announced 802.3z as the Gigabit Ethernet standard.
  • The three millionth domain name ( was also registered the same year.
  • Netscape Communications Corporation was acquired by America Online, Inc for a stock transaction valued at $4.2 billion.

Evan Williams

Indiana bank
  • Online retailers reported 5.3 billion sale.
  • The four millionth domain name ( was registered.
  • The Melissa macro virus started to spread across the network by infecting Microsoft Word documents.
  • The first full-service bank available only on the Internet was the Internet Bank of Indiana.
  • Blogger was released by Evan Williams which popularized blogging.
  • Almost 304 million people have internet access.
  • The ten millionth domain name was registered.
  • Engineers and researches from all over the world smartly overcame the Y2K issue or millenium bug which was expected to cause more loss to the industry.
  • The first short film widely distributed on the internet “405 The movie,” was released.

Jimmy Wales
  • The Firewall Enhancement Protocol (FEP) was proposed.
  • Jimmy Wales and Larry Sanger launched “Wikipedia,” the web based encyclopedia.

Dave Sifry
  • Internet blog search engine Technorati was found and launched by Dave Sifry

Mark Zuckerberg

Kevin Rose
  • SKYPE beta, the software which allows to make voice calls over the Internet (VOIP) was released for Public.
  • The facebook was found by Mark Zuckerberg from Harvard university along with Eduardo Saverin, Dustin Moskovitz and Chris Hughes.
  • The Social news web site “DIGG” was formed by Kevin Rose at San Francisco, CA-USA.

Steve Chen

Chad Hurley
  • It was the first time when the White House gave press credentials to the Blogger Garrett Graff.
  • Three former employees of Paypal, Chad Hurley, Steve Chen, and Jawed Karim created the video file sharing website called the “You tube.”

Jack Dorsey
  • The free social networking site Twitter was started by Jack Dorsey.

Mr. Barack Obama
  • Internet and Facebook played a vital role in the US general elections and attracted almost 3 million donors to contribute to the side of Mr. Obama.