The idea of establishing CARNet in Croatia was initiated in 1991. That same year the Ministry of Science and Technology started the CARNet project at the initiative of Predrag Pale.
On October 3rd 1991, a coordination body for the establishment of the Croatian educational computer network was founded with the following members:
- Darko Bulat (Ruđer Bošković Institute)
- Ivan Marić (University Computing Center - Srce)
- Velimir Vujnović (University Computing Center - Srce)
- Ljubimko Šimičić (Faculty of Science)
- Predrag Pale (Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing)
That was the beginning of the work of the Croatian Academic and Research Network - CARNet, the first Internet Service Provider (ISP) in Croatia. For the next couple of years CARNet was the only ISP in Croatia providing service for free, not only to the academic community, but to all the citizens of Croatia.
In November 1992 the first international communication connection was established, which connected CARNet Internet exchange point in Zagreb to Austria. By that act Croatia became a part of the world computer network – the Internet.
That same year first equipment was procured and the backbone of the CARNet network built. Institutions within Croatia were connected at the speed of 19-200 kbps, while the whole network was connected to the Internet through Austria at the speed of 64 kbps.
The first institutions to be connected to the Internet were:
- University Computing Center - Srce
- Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing
- Ruđer Bošković Institute
- Faculty of Science
- Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Naval Architecture in Split
- Technical faculty in Rijeka
- Faculty of Economics in Osijek
- Ministry of Science and Technology
During the first months of 1993 CARNet was assigned the administration over the top-level .hr domain by an international organization called Internet Assigned Number Authority (IANA).
In October 1994 CARNet began offering the first Internet courses for its users. In time the education of users became one of CARNet’s most important activities, so in January 2001 CARNet Educational Center Edupoint was established as an effort to organize and disseminate ICT knowledge.
Croatian government established the institution of CARNet with a decree on March 1st, 1995.
In 1996 the backbone of CARNet network was upgraded by the introduction of ATM technology, enabling the transfer of picture and sound in real time, at the basic speed of 155 Mbps. As a comparison, in 1992 Croatia was keeping pace with the other central and eastern European countries in the Internet use, while in 1996 Croatia was ahead of any other European country, with only Great Britain using ATM technology at the time.
In January 1997 first distance lecture in Croatia was organized through the CARNet ATM backbone, between the Rectorate of the Osijek University and the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing in Zagreb.
On December 1st 2001, pan-European academic and research network GEANT was put into service, to which, among others, CARNet was now connected. This is a network connecting over 3000 research and educational institutions in over 30 European countries, and by its infrastructure and application the most developed computer communication network of its kind in the world.
In cooperation with the University Computing Center CARNet released the Giga CARNet project in 2003 in order to use gigabit technologies to develop a high quality infrastructure for the CARNet member institutions, facultuies and research institutes.
Within the Giga CARNet project in February 2004 and through a connection to the GÉANT network, CARNet enabled a twice-faster connection to similar academic and research networks in Europe and the world (at the speed of 1.2 Gbp/s instead of the former 622 Mbp/s).