virtual circuit

<networking> A connection-oriented network service which is implemented on top of a network which may be either connection-oriented or connectionless (packet switching).

The term "switched virtual circuit" was coined needlessly to distinguish an ordinary virtual circuit from a permanent virtual circuit. (One of the perpetrators of this confusion appears to be ["Networking Essentials", 1996, Microsoft Press, ISBN 1-55615-806-8], a book aimed at people preparing for the MCSE exam on LANs and WANs).

Not to be confused with switched virtual connection.

Last updated: 2001-10-26

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Nearby terms:

virtual 86 mode « virtual address « virtual cache « virtual circuit » Virtual Circuit Identifier » virtual connection » Virtual Control Program Interface