5 Main Features of UDP | Difference Between TCP & UDP

Do you know about UDP (User datagram Protocol) in computer networks? What are the main features of UDP in computer networks and the difference between UDP vs TCP? All these topics have been discussed in this article. If you want to get complete information about UDP, then read this post completely, you will not need to go to any other site.

What is UDP in a computer network?

UDP is a transport protocol that is used to send information from one end to another. The full form of UDP is the User Datagram Protocol. It is a connectionless data transfer protocol.

In TCP (Transmission Control Protocol), a connection is formed between the sender and the receiver before the data is transferred. After that, the data is sent on that path.

But this does not happen in the User Datagram Protocol. In this, no connection or path is created before sending the data. That’s why it is also called the connection-less protocol.

When the client sends the data to the server, then there is no guarantee that the data will be received in the same sequence. Data packets in UDP are known as datagrams. When data is sent, there is also a possibility of data loss due to no path to it.

It does not add anything to the IP’s services other than providing process-to-process communication instead of host-to-host communication. Additionally, it performs very limited error checking.

This User Datagram Protocol is very fast in sending data as compared to all other protocols. If someone wants to send small information and there is no care about the reliability of the data, then it can use the User Datagram Protocol.

Also Read: Major Functions of Internet Protocol

UDP Header

There are many options in the UDP header of the Transmission Control Protocol, but the User Datagram Protocol has only 4 UDP header options. So let’s know how UDP works in these 4 options.

  • Source Port
  • Length
  • Destination Port
  • Checksum

Source Port

When we deliver data from one end to another, only then the port number is used. Maximum port number (0 to 216-1). It means from 0 to 65535. It means from 0 to 65535. This is the range of ports. Out of this, there are valuable port numbers from 0 to 1023, after that, some are registered port numbers and some are normal port numbers, which we use in our computer network.

When a client sends data, there is a port number in its browser. For example, if sending mail, then different port number, if accessing the database, then different port number, if transferring file then different port number is used. Different port numbers are used for each task. The source address can be identified by this port number.


The User Datagram Protocol represents a length of 16 bits. but its actual size is 216. The maximum number in these 16 bits is 65535. 216 means 65536 but its range is from 0 to 65535. In which 65535 is the total length.

There are two things inside this total length of 65535. One is the Header and the other is the Payload. Payload means the pure data that is sent by the user.

The header size is 8 bytes in User Datagram Protocol. Its length is fixed. The header from the total length 65535 is 8 bytes, so the rest of the length 65527 is of the payload.

Also Read: Importance of Network Protocol

Destination Address

This port number is used in the host of the destination address so that the data can reach the right place. Its length is 16 bits.

If the destination port is a server to which the client sends requests, then that port number is called a well-known port number.  If the destination port is the client and the response is received from the server side, then that port number is an ephemeral port number.


Typically, checksums are used for check error control. In User Datagram Protocol checksum is calculated by taking UDP header, UDP data, and Pseudo header of IP.

Talking about the Pseudo Header of IP, then all the header values ​​are not sent to it. Only the value which is fixed in it is taken. Such as source IP address, and destination IP address. When the source calculates all these values ​​and sends them to the destination, the destination also recalculates all these values. If both the values ​​are the same then there will be no error in that data. If there is any change in that value then it becomes an error found.

That value is unique so it is called a hash value. We talked earlier that the User Datagram Protocol is unreliable to transfer data. But we use checksums. This means checksum is optional in IPV 4. But it is necessary for IPV 6.

Also Read: Importance of cloud computing & their types

5 Main Features of UDP

All of you have been told earlier that the User Datagram Protocol is a connection-less protocol. In this, no connection is made between the client and the server before sending the data. Rather, the direct data is sent. In this protocol, the safety of the data packets is not taken care of. Still, some applications use UDP instead of using TCP. Let’s know about all those protocols.

Connectionless Communication

User datagram protocol is called connectionless protocol because it does not establish a dedicated connection before transmitting data. In this, data packets are sent without prior setup or acknowledgement.

Low Overhead

UDP has minimal protocol overhead as compared to other transport layer protocols such as TCP (Transmission Control Protocol). It does not have facilities like error correction, flow control and congestion control. Due to which data transmission is faster and in lower latency.

Also Read: Is HTTP safer than HTTPs

Fast and Efficient

Due to its light weight, UDP often proves to be faster and better than TCP for some types of applications. Streaming, online gaming and some applications need to run in real time. For which UDP protocol is suitable. Speed is more important than reliability in these tasks.

Broadcast and Multicast Support

UDP supports broadcasting, allowing a single packet to be sent to multiple recipients simultaneously. It also facilitates multicast communication, where a packet can be sent to a group of devices interested in receiving the data.

Integration with IP

UDP is part of the Internet Protocol suite and works in conjunction with IP (Internet Protocol). It uses IP addresses for source and destination identification and relies on IP for routing and delivery of UDP packets.

Also Read: Subnetting in computer network


There are so many differences between UDP vs TCP in the computer network. So let’s talk about it.

Its full form is Transmission Control Protocol.Its full form is User Datagram Protocol.
it is a connection-oriented protocolIt is a connection-less protocol.
Its speed is slow.Its speed is fast than other protocols.
It is reliable.It is an unreliable protocol.
The size of the TCP header is 20 Byte.The size of the header of UDP is 8 Byte.
There is a sequence of message deliveries in TCP.There is no order in which messages are delivered in UDP.
Data delivery is guaranteed in TCP.Data delivery is not guaranteed in UDP.
In this error-detection and error-correction methods are used.Errors are not checked and detected in this protocol
Due to full overload in TCP, the speed of data transmission is low.Due to less overload in UDP, the speed of data transmission is high.
This is a stateful protocol because it stores the browsed data for future use.UDP is a stateless protocol. It does not store browsing data


In conclusion, let me tell you again that in a computer network, UDP is a connectionless protocol. It is used in all the ways in which data transfer must be done quickly. It is used for work like live streaming and video conferencing etc. So, that this work can run smoothly.

Hope all of you have got to know about this topic UDP & 5 main features of UDP & UDP vs TCP very well. If you have any doubts in your mind then you can tell us. We will do our best to solve your every doubt. If you liked this article then do share it with your friends on social media.

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