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(networking, protocol)
A proprietary local area network protocol developed by Apple Computer, Inc. for communication between Apple products (e.g. Macintosh) and other computers. This protocol is independent of the network layer on which it runs. Current implementations exist for Localtalk, a 235 kilobyte per second local area network and Ethertalk, a 10 megabyte per second local area network.
This article is provided by FOLDOC - Free Online Dictionary of Computing (


Apple's original local area network architecture for its Mac line. Introduced in 1985, AppleTalk supported Apple's proprietary LocalTalk access method as well as Ethernet and Token Ring. The AppleTalk network manager and the LocalTalk access method were built into all Macs and LaserWriters. Support for AppleTalk was made available for PCs, VAXs and Unix workstations with products from Apple and third parties. A routable protocol patterned after the OSI model, Appletalk eventually gave way to TCP/IP. See AFP and TCP/IP.
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References in periodicals archive ?
pricing Client machines: System information 7 or newer 2MB free contact supplier RAM AtOnce Commercial Minimum System 6 or management newer, AppleTalk 1MB utility $600 free RAM Apple Network Commercial Administrator machine: Assistant administrative System 7.6.1or newer 8 environment, for MB free RAM.
StarNine also took over the development and sales of Microsoft Mail for AppleTalk Networks from Microsoft Corp in the mid-1990s.
-- Supports up to 125 Mac clients over AppleTalk or 1000 using TCP/IP
Already, networks largely have moved from vendor-specific protocols to the more generally implemented IP, IPX and AppleTalk (where managers, he says, still must "make sure that all the rules are followed for this to work correctly").
-- IPSec support for legacy protocols including IPX, AppleTalk and Spanning Tree
(Back then, the program's workbenches were IBM PCs with 8086 processors, and a Digital Equipment VAX 3500 and a Sun Microsystems workstation connected by an AppleTalk network.)
For example the AppleTalk protocol and the SPX protocol are incompatible.
All Macintosh computers come with a LocalTalk port, which lets you link Macintosh computers to an AppleTalk network, allowing for immediate networking capabilities.
(It's possible to connect an AppleTalk, IBM Baseband, IBM Tokenring, or Ethernet LAN directly to the Internet.) This is the best type of Internet access for two reasons: speed and services.
To make this possible Apple has licensed Token-Ring from IBM, while IBM has licensed the source code for AppleTalk protocols.

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