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Dated: Sep. 05, 2013
Related CategoriesNetworking In General
In the world of computers, networking is the practice of linking two or more computing devices together for the exchange of data. Networks are built with a mix of computer hardware and software.
Networks can be categorized in several different ways. One approach defines the type of network according to the geographic area it covers. Local area network (LAN), for example, typically includes a house, school or small buildings, while the Wide Area Network (WAN), is in all cities, states, or even across the world. Internet is the world's largest public WAN.
Computer networks differ in their design. Two basic types of network design are called client / server and peer-to-peer. Client-server networks have a centralized server computers that store email, Web pages, files and or applications. Peer-to-peer network, conversely, are where all computers tend to support the same functions. Client-server networks are much more common in business and peer-to-peer networks much more common in homes. Network topology represents its layout or structure from the point of data flow. In so-called bus networks, for example, all the computers share and communicate across one common wire, while in the star network, all data flows through one centralized device. Common types of network topologies include bus, star, ring networks and mesh networks.
Communication languages used by computing devices are called network protocols. Networks often implement multiple protocols, each of which supports a specific application. Popular protocols include TCP / IP, the most common protocol found on the Internet and in home networks.
While other types of networks are built and maintained by engineers, home networks belong to the owners like ordinary people often with little or no technical background. Various manufacturers produce broadband router hardware that is designed to simplify setting up a home network. Home broadband router allows devices in different rooms to effectively share a broadband Internet connection to allow people to easily share files and printers on the network with overall network security. Home networks have increased in capability with each generation of new technology. A few years ago, people typically start their home network only to connect several computers, with some documents, maybe a printer. It is now common for households to be connected for consoles and online games, digital video recorders, smartphones and streaming audio and video. Home Automation Systems have existed for many years, but they increased in popularity recently with practical control systems, lighting, digital thermostats and appliances.
Wired vs Wireless Networking
Many of the same network protocols such as TCP / IP, work both in wired and wireless networks. Network with Ethernet cables predominated in businesses, schools and homes for decades. In recent years, however, the wireless alternatives has emerged as a premier technology for building new computer networks, in part to support smartphones and other new types of wireless devices that have encouraged the growth of mobile networking.
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