(n.) A routing technique in which intermediate nodes wait until they have received the whole of a message before forwarding any of it. Packet switching often requires a large amount of buffer space, and contention for access to this space can lead to deadlock. See also virtual cut-through, wormhole routing.
A switching system that uses a physical communications connection only long enough to transit a data message; data messages are disassembled into packets and reassembled at the receiving end of the communication link; packets may travel over many diverse communications links to get to the common endpoint. This is most often contrasted with circuit switching in data communications, where all data messages transmitted during a session are transmitted over the same path for the duration of the session. See also Circuit Switching.
Communications technique that breaks down messages into smaller units called packets, which are individually addressed and routed through a network. The network link is occupied only during packet transmission.