To REALLY understand in DETAIL how The Internet works, you MUST make the efford and read the so-called RFCs.
RFC stand for REQUESTS FOR COMMENTS and are the official published documentation about Internet technology.
RFCs are VERY extensive, technical heavy documents, written by proffesionals, and cover every aspect of The Internet. The problem is finding the RIGHT one, because there are literally thousands of diff RFC,
for each subject.
You can either find them in a book at your local bookstore, or d/l them directly from the Internet.
Internet RFC/STD/FYI/BCP Archives is the place to start from.
They have info on how to submit an RFC, archived libraries, direct links to major Internet organizations like IANA, IAB, ISOC, ets.
This RFC Index lists all of the RFcs with their numbers,
AND more importantly, a list of ALL RFCs with their names, and date, too.
This NIC site
has them in reverse numerical order, so the newest are on top, and
older RFCs are grouped in 100s.
Most RFC become obsolete in few years and are replaiced by new ones with larger numbers. SO be careful which ones you read. The father of the Internet (may the Goddess bless his soul)
John Pastel was the guy who mainteined ALL RFCs. It was a labor of love for him. Now that he is dead, I dont know who took over his job. Let's hope they continue and be as dedicated as Mr Postel was.
Thats about ALL there is for RFCs.....happy reading...he-he