IPX/SPX is the network protocol that is largely associated with Novell Netware. At one point IPX/SPX was the most popular protocl around, and there were attempts to build something as large as the internet with IPX/SPX but it never came to fruition. Each commercial implementation of IPX/SPX was required to be licensed by Novell, and it wound up driving vendors to seek an open protocol that could scale to massive networks, with all the lessions learned from NetBEUI, and IPX/SPX eveyone started to move towards TCP/IP.
One of the features of IPX/SPX is that servers will announce themselves on the network, along with what kind of services they provide.
Another unique feature of IPX/SPX was how clients would login, they would send a GNS or "Get nearest server" packet, then every server would respond. The idea being that the nearest server could respond the quickest. Needless to say it was not efficient on large networks.