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A complete introduction to overlay networks, including what they are and what kind of structures they require, this text discusses decentralized overlays, information routing and forwarding, security, and applications. It presents advanced issues concerning performance and context-awareness and highlights recent developments in the field. It covers specific algorithms including BitTorrent, Coolstream, BitOs, Chord, Content Addressable Network, Content Delivery Networks, Overlay multicast, and Peer-to-Peer SIP. The author also presents graph-based algorithms for information dissemination as well as probabilistic algorithms.