Broadcasting refers to transmitting a packet that will be received by every device on the network. In practice, the scope of the broadcast is limited to a broadcast domain. Broadcasting a message is in contrast to uncast addressing in which a host sends datagram to another single host identified by a unique IP address.

Broadcasting is the most general communication method, and is also the most intensive in the sense that a large number of messages are required

Broadcasting may be performed as "all scatter" in which each sender performs its own scatter in which the messages are distinct for each receiver, or "all broadcast" in which they are the same

The MPI message passing method which is the de facto standard on large computer clusters includes the MPI_Alltoall method

BNot all software technologies support broadcast addressing; for example, neither X.25 nor frame relay have broadcast capability, nor is there any form of Internet-wide broadcast. Broadcasting is largely confined to local area network (LAN) technologies, most notably Ethernet and token ring, where the performance impact of broadcasting is not as large as it would be in a wide area network.

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