What is computer network – A computer network ( sometimes called a Network) is a system that connects a number of different computers that are not connected to one another in order to share information (data) and resources. Users are able to converse with greater ease thanks to the seamless integration of computers and several other gadgets. A group of two or more computers that are connected to one another over a network is known as a computer network. Either wired or wireless media can be utilized to successfully create a connection to a network.
Network topology is a structure of a network that can be logical or physical. Some Network Topology that are commonly used:
A bus topology network is a computer network that connects computers or servers, printers, and other network devices to a single cable. This type of network is now rarely used.
This type of topology is referred to as a ring topology due to the fact that one computer is connected to another, with the last computer being connected to the first computer. precisely two neighbors are assigned to each device. The data moves in only one direction around the ring as it is transmitted.
The devices in the star topology do not have direct connections to one another but instead must route data through a device called a hub or a switch.
In this topology, every computer or network device is connected via a hub or switch. Direct connection between the devices is not possible. As an exchange, the controller or hub is used. This topology is what we are using today.
Mesh topology has a dedicated connection to every other device. This link is one that exclusively transmits data between the two devices it connects.
A fully-connected mesh network uses all the available channels, and requires n *(n 1./2 physical connections.
How does a computer network work
The foundation of any network is the switch. Switches are used to connect multiple computers and printers to the network. A switch has an uplink port and a downlink port. If you plug a cable into a computer, it will go through the uplink port and into the switch. When you plug a cable into a printer, it will go through the downlink port and out of the switch.
Computer Networking Devices
In a computer network there are several devices or components that made up the network, they are:
Network Interface Card
The network interface card (NIC) is a card that plugs into a computer’s motherboard and provides an interface to the computer’s network. NIC can be wired or wireless.
Network cables are used to connect computers or networks. The cable can be Fiber Optic or Ethernet cables. Fiber optic can reach a distance area (several kilometers), can send data faster, is very small, expensive, and is usually used to connect 2 separate buildings. The Ethernet cable looks like a telephone cable but is bigger because it has eight cables inside it. The maximum length between computers or hub/switch is 100 meters.
Every computer that has NIC (ethernet adapter) is connected via a hub. Hub can have several ports that can be used by a station, server, or printer. Hub share their bandwidth with the computers that connect to them.
A swith is an advanced version of a hub, it gives better performance when transmitting data among computers.
The router is responsible for routing packets between different networks. It determines the best route to take based on the destination and the routing table.
You can imagine the access point as a wireless hub or switch. Wireless computers are connected to an access point instead of to a hub.
Are printers that are connected to a network, rather than being plugged into a computer. This allows you to print documents, photos, and other files from anywhere on your network.
A computer system that provides services for users, in a company it can be a file server that provides files to every networked users or a database server that processes data and make the output to the users.
Different Types of computer networks
There are many different kinds of networks, each serving a distinct function even though their overarching goals are comparable. The following are some broad categories that are used to classify modern networks.
Local-area network (LAN)
A local area network (LAN) is a collection of devices connected to a single network, such as a home or office network. It’s a group of computers, printers, and other network-connected devices that work together to share resources and information. A LAN can be large or small. For example, a LAN in a large company with hundreds of employees and thousands of devices would be called a corporate network.
Wide-area network (WAN)
A WAN is a type of network that connects computers and networks in different locations. These locations may be at different offices, cities, states, or even countries. A WAN is made up of several different types of connections such as fiber optic lines, satellite communications, DSL, cable, or wireless. WANs connect the LANs of an organization so that users can share information between each other.
Intranet is a network that uses public network such as the Internet as a medium to connect to other private networks in a different location. Instead of building their own infrastructure which is very expensive to connect to their other private network located in different areas even countries, they use the Internet to communicate. When using the Internet, they create tunnel and encryption so the data only available tho their network.
The internet is the largest network computer that enables computer networks of businesses, schools, governments, and other organizations from all over the world to connect with each other and share information. As a result, there is a complex network of cables, computers, servers, data centers, routers, satellites, and wireless towers that are required to transmit data around the world.
The Internet is an enormous network that connects other networks and serves as an infrastructure for networking. It creates a network that connects millions of computers all over the world, making it possible for any computer to communicate with any other computer on the network as long as both computers are connected to the Internet. The Internet is a worldwide network of computers that are linked together and communicate and share information through the use of a defined set of protocols known as the Internet Protocol Suite.
Service providers are the people who build, own, and operate the Internet. They can provide a service that connects two different computers together. A service provider can be a company like AT&T or Verizon, or it can be an individual that provides a service to many different people.
Why do People Need Computer Network
Without well-designed computer networks, no sector of the economy—be it education, retail, finance, technology, the government, or healthcare—can continue to function normally. When an organization grows in size, the network inevitably becomes more complicated. Before beginning the laborious process of developing and installing a computer network, there are a few primary goals that absolutely need to be thought through.
Goals to Achieve When Implementing a Computer Network
1. Resource sharing
It’s not enough to just share information; you need to make it easily accessible and sharable. If you can do that, you can achieve success.
When you are using data to make business decisions, you need to have access to reliable data. This means you need a system that can accurately record data and provide this information to the people who need it.
2. Resource availability & reliability
This is a key point for companies that provide services in areas where the internet is not always reliable. If you need to be able to access a resource at any time, it is important that the resource is available in multiple places. This also applies to companies that offer goods or services that are dependent on the internet.
3. Performance management
The amount of work required by a corporation only increases as it expands. The performance of the system as a whole is improved as well as the capacity to accommodate further expansion when one or more processors are added to the network. The lookup and fetch times of data can be greatly improved by saving it in databases with a good architecture.
4. Cost savings
Large mainframe computers are expensive, but adding processors to them at strategic points can improve their performance and save money in the long run. The best time to do this is when they are new. By adding processors as needed, you can use the existing hardware for longer, and save money in the process.
5. Increased storage capacity
Employees that work with large amounts of data might benefit tremendously from the use of network-connected storage devices. For instance, each individual member of the data science team does not require their own separate data warehouses for the extremely large number of records that they process. The work can be done in an even more effective manner with the help of centralized repositories. The ability to increase storage capacity is essential in today’s world, as organizations are witnessing record quantities of client data coming into their systems.
6. Streamlined collaboration & communication
The day-to-day operations of a firm are profoundly influenced by the networks that are in place. Employees are able to more effectively share files, view one other’s work, synchronize their calendars, and communicate their thoughts with one another. Internal messaging platforms like Slack, which allow for unrestricted flow of information and discourse, are utilized by all businesses operating in the current day. Despite this, emails are still the preferred method of professional communication with customers, business partners, and suppliers.
7. Minimize errors
Networks help to eliminate errors by ensuring that all parties involved obtain information from a single source, even if they are viewing it from separate locations. This is done even if they are accessing it from many locations. The data that has been backed up ensures consistency and continuity. There isn’t going to be much of a hassle involved in making standardized versions of customer and staff guides accessible to a big number of individuals.