Unlike PC users, users of embedded devices do not expect to have to spend time configuring devices before they can use them on a network. This means that some sort of auto-discovery/auto-configuration functionality should be an essential part of any networked device. Three auto-discovery standards have emerged in the industry: Universal Plug and Play (UPnP), Jini, and Salutation.

In this paper, each different mechanism will be examined, outlining their advantages and disadvantages. Each mechanism will then be compared to the other, to give the reader an idea of possible real world problems/advantages of each solution.