QNX Neutrino networks can be put together using various hardware and industry-standard protocols. Since these are completely transparent to application programs and users, new network architectures can be introduced at any time without disturbing the OS.
Each node in the network is assigned a unique name that becomes its identifier. This name is the only visible means to determine whether the OS is running as a network or as a standalone operating system.
This degree of transparency is yet another example of the distinctive power of QNX Neutrino's message-passing architecture. In many systems, important functions such as networking, IPC, or even message passing are built on top of the OS, rather than integrated directly into its core. The result is often an awkward, inefficient double standard interface, whereby communication between processes is one thing, while penetrating the private interface of a mysterious monolithic kernel is another matter altogether.
In contrast to monolithic systems, QNX Neutrino is grounded on the principle that effective communication is the key to effective operation. Message passing thus forms the cornerstone of our microkernel architecture and enhances the efficiency of all transactions among all processes throughout the entire system, whether across a PC backplane or across a mile of twisted pair.