What's the difference between the 2 network protocols..

Named Pipes and TCP/IP ?

I have installed Oracle 8.0.6 here on couple of machines. Whenever it comes to setting this I get confused. My boss told me that we should use TCP/IP. But sometimes that didn't work
giving errors like NO LISTNER and I wasn't able to connect to database. So I changed it to Named Pipes and it worked !
But today I tried to use Named pipes on the different machine connecting to same database and it gave me error TNS: Unable to connect...( I am sorry but I do not have exact error message right now).
I did do all basic checks like PATH, tnsnames.ora file, services etc.

I tried to read about this on Oracle website but no luck. Does any one know a book which explains this in detail ?

Can some one help me please ?