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I thought for a long time that sockets were defined as an end point of a two way connection, however UDP sockets can be created without the other end making a socket to keep the connection live.

What is the exact reason for this?

I always thought it was because during a TCP connection, the other end user needs to communicate back by sending acknowledgements, while UDP they don't. I;ve just guessed that and never exactly known why.

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Hello JD and welcome to Network Engineering!

Unlike TCP, UDP protocol does not require connection to be established, therefore sending host not waiting for confirmation of transmission or anything. Receiving side can check that data transfered are correct by checksum validation.

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I thought for a long time that sockets were defined as an end point of a two way connection, however UDP sockets ...

Unlike TCP, UDP does not know the concept of a "connection" at all. UDP is used to send packets that don't belong to a connection to the port of another computer. UDP can even be used to send "multicast" packets that are sent to multiple computers.

You may also send an UDP packet to some computer and receive the "answer" from a completely different computer (as you see it in the Teredo protocol).

Andrey Prokhorov writes in his answer that UDP does "not require" a connection to be established;

however because UDP does not know the concept of connections, it is even impossible that a connection is established.

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