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(By analogy with catastrophic failure of a nuclear reactor) An event that causes saturation, or near saturation, of a network. Network meltdown usually results from illegal or misrouted packets (see Chernobyl packet) and typically lasts only a short time. It may also be caused by a hardware fault. It is the network equivalent of thrashing.
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network meltdownA condition in which the network barely functions due to excessive traffic. It can be caused by a legitimate overload of valid traffic or by malicious or erroneous conditions. See broadcast storm and denial-of-service attack.
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