I know it might sound like a silly question, but afaik TCP stands for transmission control protocol. However I found a couple of websites using the term Transport Control Protocol.

So I was wondering if they're wrong or if there is any source/reference for using the term "transport"?

Here's an example of 2 websites refering to TCP as Transport Control Protocol


And page 12/13 (slide 68) https://perso.univ-lyon1.fr/olivier.gluck/Cours/Supports/L3IF_RE/RE-P2-Bases.pdf

Thanks in advance


2 Answers 2


The guys who defined it called it Transmission Control Protocol only. The others seem to have it mixed up.


"Transport" in place of "Transmission" just looks like a mistake.

However, in some early documents "TCP" is used to mean "Transmission Control Program" not "Protocol", as you can see in RFC 675, written by Cerf et al and dated December 1974.

Both earlier and current documents use "Transmission" uniquely:

  • "Protocol" is used in Cerf and Kahn's slightly earlier landmark paper "A protocol for packet network intercommunication", published May 1974 in (IEEE Transactions on Communication, vol. C- 2O, No. 5. May 1974, pp. 637-648.)
  • The standard as we now know it, RFC 793, uses "Protocol". This was published in 1981 and it is only attributed to the "Information Sciences Institute", though editor Postel describes it as having many authors.
  • Thanks for the additional information on protocol/program confusion.
    – user206904
    Feb 7, 2020 at 13:25

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