What does "inet" stand for in the ip utility?

I would assume ‘inet‘ stands for internet ip address, but is that correct? (And ‘inet6‘ being internet ip address v.6.)

ip a yields a list of virtual (and physical?) network devices. When an IP address is mapped to a device, it is displayed as

1: lo: <LOOPBACK,UP,LOWER_UP> mtu 65536 qdisc noqueue state UNKNOWN group default qlen 1000
    link/loopback 00:00:00:00:00:00 brd 00:00:00:00:00:00
    inet 127.0.0.1/8 scope host lo
       valid_lft forever preferred_lft forever
    inet6 ::1/128 scope host 
       valid_lft forever preferred_lft forever

According to https://acronyms.thefreedictionary.com/INET, the following definitions are possible:
Acronym Definition

  • INET Internet
  • INET Intranet
  • INET International Networking
  • INET Information Network
  • INET Institute for New Economic Thinking (est. 2009)
  • INET International Networking (conference)
  • INET Institutional Network (Hawaii Department of Education)
  • INET Instruments and Experimental Techniques (journal)
  • INET Interagency Narcotics Enforcement Team
  • INET Instinet LLC
  • INET Integrated Network Enhanced Telemetry
  • INET Instructional Network
Asked By: Jonathan Komar

||

inet = Internet protocol family

inet6 = Internet protocol version 6 family

manpage inet

DESCRIPTION

The Internet protocol family is a collection of protocols layered atop the Internet Protocol (IP) transport layer, and utilizing the Internet address format. The Internet family provides protocol support for the SOCK_STREAM, SOCK_DGRAM, and SOCK_RAW socket types; the SOCK_RAW interface provides access to the IP protocol.

manpage inet6

DESCRIPTION

The inet6 family is an updated version of inet(4) family. While inet(4) implements Internet Protocol version 4, inet6 implements Internet Protocol version 6.

inet6 is a collection of protocols layered atop the Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) transport layer, and utilizing the IPv6 address format. The inet6 family provides protocol support for the SOCK_STREAM, SOCK_DGRAM, and SOCK_RAW socket types; the SOCK_RAW interface provides access to the IPv6 protocol.

Answered By: GAD3R

The inet in ifconfig output is an address family:

If the first argument after the interface name is recognized as the
name of a supported address family, that address family is used for
decoding and displaying all protocol addresses.  Currently supported
address families include inet (TCP/IP, default), inet6 (IPv6), ax25
(AMPR Packet Radio), ddp (Appletalk Phase 2), ipx (Novell IPX) and
netrom (AMPR Packet radio).

man 7 address_families leads to man 7 ip, which mentions netinet/in.h (POSIX), which in turn mentions arpa/inet.h (POSIX).

And the description of arpa/inet.h is:

arpa/inet.h - definitions for internet operations

So, pretty much, “internet.”

Answered By: muru
Categories: Answers Tags: ,
Answers are sorted by their score. The answer accepted by the question owner as the best is marked with
at the top-right corner.