Programmers new to the field of embedded network programming usually hail from a Windows or UNIX background. Since a desktop computer has virtually unlimited resources and processing power, network programming varies greatly in an embedded system with limited resources and a specialized operating system. Although an embedded TCP/IP stack should operate to some level of success under poor programming conditions, an informed and cautious programmer can make optimal use of system resources and, therefore, write a better application. This paper aims to outline ways to program efficiently and defensively in an embedded system to create application tasks, conserve resources, maximize CPU cycles, and optimally configure the node.
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