(XEROX PARC) An Ethernet packet that contains bootstrap code, periodically sent
out from a working computer to infuse the "breath of life" into any computer on
the network that has crashed. Computers depending on such packets have
sufficient hardware or firmware code to wait for (or request) such a packet
during the reboot process.
See also dickless workstation.
The notional "kiss-of-death packet", with a function complementary to that of a
breath-of-life packet, is recommended for dealing with hosts that consume too
many network resources. Though "kiss-of-death packet" is usually used in jest,
there is at least one documented instance of an Internet subnet with limited
address-table slots in a gateway computer in which such packets were routinely
used to compete for slots, rather like Christmas shoppers competing for scarce
break-even point « breakpoint « break statement «
breath-of-life packet » breedle » BRH » BRI