Introduction To Networking

What is a Network?
A computer network is simply two or more computers connected together so they can exchange information. A small network can be as simple as two computers linked together by a single cable.

Figure 1.1 Two Networked Computers

Building a Simple Network
Most networks use hubs to connect computers together. A large network may connect thousands of computers and other devices together.

Figure 1.2 Computers Networked With a Hub

A wireless network connects computers without a hub or network cables. Computers use radio communications to send data between each other.

Figure 1.3 Wireless Network

What Can I do With a Simple Network?
Without a network, you can access resources only on your own computer. These resources may be devices in your computer, such as a folder or disk drive, or they may be connected to your computer, such as a printer or CDROM drive. These devices, accessible only to you, are local resources. Networking allows you to share resources among a group of computer users.

Sharing Files and Drives
If your computers are connected to a network, each computer can make its resources available to other computers in your office by sharing them over the network. Instead of working in isolation as you do on a single computer not linked to a network, you can work collectively, within a system that shares resources among a group of computer users. Each computer on your network can share folders, entire disk drives, or a CD-ROM drive. Then other computers on your network can access documents and other files stored in the folders and on the drives. Instead of copying a document to a diskette and giving it to another person to view, anyone can open and view the document using the network. If you want to view the company’s annual report stored on a co-worker’s computer, you can use the network to access the document on that computer. If you want to listen to music stored on a computer in another room, you can use the network to access the music files.

Sharing a Printer
If you have a printer connected to your computer, you can share the printer with other computers on the network. Then instead of buying a printer for every computer, all the computers can print across the network to the printer. Suppose you want to print a document on a color laser printer that is

connected to another computer in the office. Instead of copying your file to a disk, going to the other computer, and interrupting the person using that computer, you can print directly over the network.

Sharing an Internet Connection
If you already have access to the Internet from one computer on your network, you can share that Internet connection with other computers on the network. Then all the computers on your network can browse the Web at the same time, using this single Internet connection.

Networking Components
To network computers together, you need to install networking hardware and software. Every network includes these three components: The computers that are connected together. Computers and similar devices are called nodes when connected to a network. The networking hardware that connects the computers together, including hardware installed in your computer, network cables, and devices that connect all the cables together. Networking software that runs on each computer and enables it to communicate with other computers on the network.

Networking Hardware
Here is the networking hardware you need to set up a small network: Network adapter cards: expansion cards that provide the physical connection between each computer and the network. The card installs into a slot on your computer, just like a sound card or modem card. Some newer computers have a network adapter already built into the system. Laptop computers often use a card that slides into a PC card slot.

Figure 1.5 Network Adapter Card

Network hub: the central connection point for network cables that connect to computers or other devices on a network. The hub has several network cable jacks or ports that you use to connect network cables to computers. The hub contains circuitry that enables each computer to communicate with any other computer connected to the hub.

Figure 1.6 Network Hub

Network cables: special, unshielded twisted-pair (UTP) cables used to connect each computer to the hub. The cable you need is Category 5 UTP cable with a square plastic RJ-45 connector on each end.

Figure 1.7 Network Cable with RJ-45 Connector

All the networking hardware described here is known as Ethernet. Ethernet is the industry-wide standard for computer networks. Standard Ethernet networks transmit data at 10 million bits per second (Mbps). A newer Ethernet standard, called Fast Ethernet, transmits data at 100 Mbps. Computer networks often contain a mixture of 10 Mbps and 100 Mbps devices.

Wireless Networking Hardware

You may want to network computers where it is expensive or difficult to run network cables, for example, between two rooms or two buildings. However, recent advances in wireless networking technology make wireless networking practical and affordable. New wireless standards have facilitated the development of wireless products with good performance and the ability to integrate easily into a wired Ethernet network. The Ethernet standard for wireless networking is the IEEE 802.11b wireless standard. The 802.11b standard supports wireless connections at speeds up to 11 Mps, comparable to 10 Mbps wired Ethernet. Wireless industry leaders formed the Wireless Ethernet Compatibility Alliance (WECA) to certify cross-vendor compatibility with the 802.11b standard. These products display the WECA "Wireless Fidelity" (Wi-Fi†) logo

Figure 1.8 Wireless Fidelity Logo

Suppose you want to network a few computers together in a small area where it would be expensive to have network cabling installed in an existing building. Or perhaps you just have a desktop computer and a notebook computer at home and you would like to be able to roam the house with the notebook computer and perhaps even browse the Web from the hammock in the back yard. Wireless Ethernet makes all this possible. You can install wireless adapters in each computer and form a wireless network.

Figure 1.9 PC Card and USB Wireless Adapters

Other Types of Networking Hardware

Other networking technologies are available that enable you to network a small number of computers together in a home or office. These technologies often use the telephone wiring or power lines to connect computers. Some use alternative wireless standards. While it is sometimes easier to install these networking systems, their performance and capabilities are limited. The performance is typically 10 times slower than the current Ethernet capabilities. While Fast Ethernet transmits data at 100 Mbps, these technologies typically transmit data between 1 Mbps and 10 Mbps. Also, the capabilities of these devices are often limited to the capabilities of the devices sold by one manufacturer. You usually cannot mix devices made by different manufacturers. The following table compares Ethernet to some of these different networking technologies.

If you are installing a new network, the best choice is standard Ethernet hardware. This is the same networking hardware used by thousands of businesses and corporations to connect millions of computers together. Ethernet networking components are standardized, inexpensive, dependable, and easy to install and maintain. Ethernet hardware is widely available. You can find network hubs, adapters, and cables at most stores that specialize in computer sales. Because all manufacturers of Ethernet hardware adhere to the Ethernet standards, you can buy any component from any manufacturer and connect it to Ethernet components you already have. Wireless Ethernet is the best choice if you are installing a wireless network. To make sure the hardware is 802.11b compatible, look for the WiFi logo on the product box. The Wi-Fi logo indicates the product is certified by the Wireless Ethernet Compatibility Alliance (WECA). Because these products are standardized, you can buy products from different manufacturers and use them together. Wireless Ethernet products have become widely available and continue to drop in price. If you use standard Ethernet and 802.11 wireless networking products, you can easily connect wireless and wired networks together using a wireless access point.

New Technologies
New Ethernet standards support even higher data rates for both wired and wireless networks. Gigabit Ethernet: This new Ethernet standard transfers data at 1000 Mbps (1 Gbps) using standard Category 5 networking cables. If you install this cable today, you can migrate to the faster hardware should the need arise. Gigabit adapters, hubs and switches are available today, but Fast Ethernet is likely to provide adequate bandwidth for most networking applications on a small network. In most cases, the Ethernet hardware that you purchase today will be able to interoperate with newer Gigabit hardware. 802.11a: This new wireless standard supports speeds up to 54 Mbps. It uses technology similar to 802.11b, but operates at 5 GHz rather than at the 2.4 GHz band used for 802.11b. The higher frequency makes 802.11a less susceptible to interference from other devices such as cell phones, cordless phones, and microwave ovens. An 802.11a network can operate without interference in the same location as an 802.11b network, or near Bluetooth devices, which operate in the same frequency spectrum as 802.11b. 802.11g: This new wireless standard also supports speeds up to 54 Mbps. It is an extension of 802.11b and operates in the same RF spectrum as 802.11b. While 802.11g offers a clear upgrade path from 802.11b, 802.11a is less likely to be affected by interference. It is

likely that one of these two competing technologies will become widely adopted. These new technologies are likely to be more expensive until their use becomes widespread. If you choose to use any of these new technologies, make sure your new hardware is compatible with any existing hardware you have. If you choose 802.11a or 802.11g, you may want to choose adapters that are compatible with 802.11b. Compatibility with 802.11b will let you connect to networks that don’t support the newer technology.

Networking Software
Microsoft Windows† includes the networking software you need to set up a small network of computers that can share documents and printers. All you need to do is install the Windows components for networking, and configure your computer to use these networking features. Most of the software you need will be installed when you install a network adapter in your computer. The information in Chapter 4 of this book can help you configure the networking software in Windows. The information in Chapter 5 tells you how to start using this networking software to share documents and printers. No matter which networking hardware you choose to install, the information in this book will help you set up and use your network. After you have installed the networking drivers for your network adapter, the networking software built into Windows will work with your hardware. The information about using Windows networking in the rest of this book will help you get the most out of your network.

Types of Networks
The type of network described in this book is a simple local network, often called a local area network or LAN. A LAN connects computers together at one location.

Small Peer-to-Peer Networks
You can build a simple, small network without using the complex and expensive equipment used in large networks. On such a network, often called a peer-to-peer network, each computer can communicate with any other computer on the network. You can connect computers together using network cables and a hub, or use wireless technology to network the computers. The focus of this book is on building a simple peer-to-peer network. Peer-to-peer networks are easy to install and maintain, and they give you many of the advantages of a large network. A peer-to-peer network is the obvious choice for a network in a home or small office. You can set up this network yourself, without buying an expensive server, and without paying for the services of a network administrator to install and manage the network. Peer-to-peer networking has gained recent popularity on the Internet. Computers connected to the Internet communicate directly with each other and share files. The software to set up a local peer-to-peer network has been included in Windows since the release of Windows 95. People have been building simple peer-to-peer networks since that time, using the software built into Windows.

The Differences Between a Small Network and a Large Network
Large networks are more complex than small networks in several ways.

Large networks use powerful servers to provide networking services. This type of network is often called a client-server network. The servers control network access and provide services such as file storage, network printing, and Internet access. The computers or clients on the network access the servers to log on, access files, and print documents. The servers may be running networking software from Novell or Microsoft, or they may be running the UNIX† or Linux† operating systems. Large networks are usually constructed by connecting several small networks together with special networking equipment that controls communication between the smaller segments of subnetworks or subnets. The bridge or router checks the data sent on one network or subnet and determines if it should be sent to the other network. Each subnet might have over 100 computers connected to several interconnected hubs or switches. Large networks are often connected across long distances using highspeed telephone lines. A network connected like this is called a wide area network or WAN.

The Difference Between a Network and the Internet
A network of a few computers in one building is a local network. The Internet is a world-wide collection of thousands of interconnected computer networks. Because the Internet connects many different kinds of computers together, it is characterized by a number of communication standards that let these different kinds of computers talk to each other. Computers running Windows can communicate with each other on a local network with the simple networking software built into Windows. Windows also includes the software that enables your computer to access the Internet. However, configuring your computer to use the Internet is often complex. It’s easier to connect computers together on a local network than it is to connect computers to the Internet. In addition to connecting your local computers together, you can connect your network to the Internet so that all of the computers on the local network can browse the Web or send e-mail. Newer versions of Windows include the software that routes network traffic from your local network to the Internet. You can also purchase a special device to connect your network to the Internet.

Network classification
Individual networked devices are assigned to appropriate VLANs based on the type of users which have access to them. The possible network classifications are:
• • • • • • • •

Undergraduate Network Postgraduate Coursework Network Postgraduate Research Network Staff Network Wireless Network Unregistered Network Restricted Network External Network

The user categories map to the network categories as follows:

Undergraduate Student, Student Visitors and Guests

Undergraduate Network

• • •

Honours Student, Postgraduate Coursework Student Postgraduate Coursework Network Postgraduate Research Student, Staff Visitors and Guests Postgraduate Research Network Staff Members Staff Network

The other network types are for special purposes (regardless of the type of users).

Comments on implementation
The user and network classifications above are based on the level of trust that the Department places in each type of user. It is intended that this policy is one step abstracted from the actual implementation. For example, there can be separate VLANs for Technical, Admin and Academic staff members, but all will have the same access privileges as they will all be classified as Staff Networks. The following lists of allowed and denied traffic will need to be modified once this policy is implemented based on actual results. These lists are a best approximation in the absence of empirical evidence.

Network topology
Network topology is defined as the interconnection of the various elements (links, nodes, etc.) of a computer network. Network Topologies can be physical or logical. Physical Topology means the physical design of a network including the devices, location and cable installation. Logical topology refers to the fact that how data actually transfers in a network as opposed to its physical design. Topology can be considered as a virtual shape or structure of a network. This shape actually does not correspond to the actual physical design of the devices on the computer network. The computers on the home network can be arranged in a circle shape but it does not necessarily mean that it presents a ring topology. Any particular network topology is determined only by the graphical mapping of the configuration of physical and/or logical connections between nodes. The study of network topology uses graph theory. Distances between nodes, physical interconnections, transmission rates, and/or signal types may differ in two networks and yet their topologies may be identical. A Local Area Network (LAN) is one example of a network that exhibits both a physical topology and a logical topology. Any given node in the LAN has one or more links to one or more nodes in the network and the mapping of these links and nodes in a graph results in a geometrical shape that may be used to describe the physical topology of the network. Likewise, the mapping of the data flow between the nodes in the network determines the logical topology of the network. The physical and logical topologies may or may not be identical in any particular network.

Diagram of different network topologies.

Basic topology types
The study of network topology recognizes five basic topologies:
• • • • •

Bus topology Star topology Ring topology Tree topology Mesh topology

This classification is based on the interconnection between computers - be it physical or logical.

Classification of network topologies
There are also three basic categories of network topologies:
• • •

Physical topologies Signal topologies Logical topologies

The terms Signal topology and logical topology are often used interchangeably, though there is a subtle difference between the two.

Physical topologies
The mapping of the nodes of a network and the physical connections between them – i.e., the layout of wiring, cables, the locations of nodes, and the interconnections between the nodes and the cabling or wiring system[1]. Classification of physical topologies Point-to-point: The simplest topology is a permanent link between two endpoints (the line in the illustration above). Switched point-to-point topologies are the basic model of conventional telephony. The value of a permanent point-to-point network is the value of guaranteed, or nearly so, communications between the two endpoints. The value of an ondemand point-to-point connection is proportional to the number of potential pairs of subscribers, and has been expressed as Metcalfe's Law.

Permanent (dedicated) Easiest to understand, of the variations of point-to-point topology, is a point-topoint communications channel that appears, to the user, to be permanently associated with the two endpoints. Children's "tin-can telephone" is one example, with a microphone to a single public address speaker is another. These are examples of physical dedicated channels. Within many switched telecommunications systems, it is possible to establish a permanent circuit. One example might be a telephone in the lobby of a public building, which is programmed to ring only the number of a telephone dispatcher. "Nailing down" a switched connection saves the cost of running a physical circuit between the two points. The resources in such a connection can be released when no longer needed, for example, a television circuit from a parade route back to the studio. Switched Using circuit-switching or packet-switching technologies, a point-to-point circuit can be set up dynamically, and dropped when no longer needed. This is the basic mode of conventional telephony.

Bus network topology In local area networks where bus topology is used, each machine is connected to a single cable. Each computer or server is connected to the single bus cable through some kind of connector. A terminator is required at each end of the bus cable to prevent the signal from bouncing back and forth on the bus cable. A signal from the source travels in both directions to all machines connected on the bus cable until it finds the MAC address or IP address on the network that is the intended recipient. If the machine address does not match the intended address for the data, the machine ignores the data. Alternatively, if the data does match the machine address, the data is accepted. Since the bus topology consists of only one wire, it is rather inexpensive to implement when compared to other topologies. However, the low cost of implementing the technology is offset by the high cost of managing the network. Additionally, since only one cable is utilized, it can be the single point of failure. If the network cable breaks, the entire network will be down.

Linear bus The type of network topology in which all of the nodes of the network are connected to a common transmission medium which has exactly two endpoints (this is the 'bus', which is also commonly referred to as the backbone, or trunk) – all data that is transmitted between nodes in the network is transmitted over this common transmission medium and is able to be received by all nodes in the network virtually simultaneously (disregarding propagation delays)[1]. Note: The two endpoints of the common transmission medium are normally terminated with a device called a terminator that exhibits the characteristic impedance of the transmission medium and which dissipates or absorbs the energy that remains in the signal to prevent the signal from being reflected or

propagated back onto the transmission medium in the opposite direction, which would cause interference with and degradation of the signals on the transmission medium (See Electrical termination). Distributed bus The type of network topology in which all of the nodes of the network are connected to a common transmission medium which has more than two endpoints that are created by adding branches to the main section of the transmission medium – the physical distributed bus topology functions in exactly the same fashion as the physical linear bus topology (i.e., all nodes share a common transmission medium).

Star network topology In local area networks with a star topology, each network host is connected to a central hub. In contrast to the bus topology, the star topology connects each node to the hub with a point-to-point connection. All traffic that transverses the network passes through the central hub. The hub acts as a signal booster or repeater. The star topology is considered the easiest topology to design and implement. An advantage of the star topology is the simplicity of adding additional nodes. The primary disadvantage of the star topology is that the hub represents a single point of failure.

Star network topology

After the special case of the point-to-point link, as in note 1.) above, the next simplest type of network that is based upon the physical star topology would consist of one central node – the 'hub' – with two separate point-to-point links to two peripheral nodes – the 'spokes'. Although most networks that are based upon the physical star topology are commonly implemented using a special device such as a hub or switch as the central node (i.e., the 'hub' of the star), it is also possible to implement a network that is based upon the physical star topology using a computer or even a simple common connection point as the 'hub' or central node – however, since many illustrations of the physical star network topology depict the central node as one of these special devices, some confusion is possible, since this practice may lead to the misconception that a physical star network requires the central node to be one of these special devices, which is not true because a simple network consisting of three computers connected as in note 2.) above also has the topology of the physical star.

Star networks may also be described as either broadcast multi-access or nonbroadcast multi-access (NBMA), depending on whether the technology of the network either automatically propagates a signal at the hub to all spokes, or only addresses individual spokes with each communication.

Extended star
A type of network topology in which a network that is based upon the physical star topology has one or more repeaters between the central node (the 'hub' of the star) and the peripheral or 'spoke' nodes, the repeaters being used to extend the maximum transmission distance of the point-to-point links between the central node and the peripheral nodes beyond that which is supported by the transmitter power of the central node or beyond that which is supported by the standard upon which the physical layer of the physical star network is based. If the repeaters in a network that is based upon the physical extended star topology are replaced with hubs or switches, then a hybrid network topology is created that is referred to as a physical hierarchical star topology, although some texts make no distinction between the two topologies.

Ring network topology In local area networks where the ring topology is used, each computer is connected to the network in a closed loop or ring. Each machine or computer has a unique address that is used for identification purposes. The signal passes through each machine or computer connected to the ring in one direction. Ring topologies typically utilize a token passing scheme, used to control access to the network. By utilizing this scheme, only one machine can transmit on the network at a time. The machines or computers connected to the ring act as signal boosters or repeaters which strengthen the signals that transverse the network. The primary disadvantage of ring topology is the failure of one machine will cause the entire network to fail.

Ring topology

The value of fully meshed networks is proportional to the exponent of the number of subscribers, assuming that communicating groups of any two endpoints, up to and including all the endpoints, is approximated by Reed's Law.

Fully connected mesh topology Fully connected Note: The physical fully connected mesh topology is generally too costly and complex for practical networks, although the topology is used when there are only a small number of nodes to be interconnected.

Fully connected Partially connected mesh topology Partially connected The type of network topology in which some of the nodes of the network are connected to more than one other node in the network with a point-to-point link – this makes it possible to take advantage of some of the redundancy that is provided by a physical fully connected mesh topology without the expense and complexity required for a connection between every node in the network. Note: In most practical networks that are based upon the physical partially connected mesh topology, all of the data that is transmitted between nodes in the network takes the shortest path (or an approximation of the shortest path) between nodes, except in the case of a failure or break in one of the links, in which case the data takes an alternative path to the destination. This requires that the nodes of the network possess some type of logical 'routing' algorithm to determine the correct path to use at any particular time.

Partially connected

Tree network topology Also known as a hierarchical network. The type of network topology in which a central 'root' node (the top level of the hierarchy) is connected to one or more other nodes that are one level lower in the hierarchy (i.e., the second level) with a point-to-point link between each of the second level nodes and the top level central 'root' node, while each of the second level nodes that

are connected to the top level central 'root' node will also have one or more other nodes that are one level lower in the hierarchy (i.e., the third level) connected to it, also with a point-to-point link, the top level central 'root' node being the only node that has no other node above it in the hierarchy (The hierarchy of the tree is symmetrical.) Each node in the network having a specific fixed number, of nodes connected to it at the next lower level in the hierarchy, the number, being referred to as the 'branching factor' of the hierarchical tree. 1.) A network that is based upon the physical hierarchical topology must have at least three levels in the hierarchy of the tree, since a network with a central 'root' node and only one hierarchical level below it would exhibit the physical topology of a star. 2.) A network that is based upon the physical hierarchical topology and with a branching factor of 1 would be classified as a physical linear topology. 3.) The branching factor, f, is independent of the total number of nodes in the network and, therefore, if the nodes in the network require ports for connection to other nodes the total number of ports per node may be kept low even though the total number of nodes is large – this makes the effect of the cost of adding ports to each node totally dependent upon the branching factor and may therefore be kept as low as required without any effect upon the total number of nodes that are possible. 4.) The total number of point-to-point links in a network that is based upon the physical hierarchical topology will be one less than the total number of nodes in the network. 5.) If the nodes in a network that is based upon the physical hierarchical topology are required to perform any processing upon the data that is transmitted between nodes in the network, the nodes that are at higher levels in the hierarchy will be required to perform more processing operations on behalf of other nodes than the nodes that are lower in the hierarchy. Such a type of network topology is very useful and highly recommended.

Tree topology

Signal topology
The mapping of the actual connections between the nodes of a network, as evidenced by the path that the signals take when propagating between the nodes. Note: The term 'signal topology' is often used synonymously with the term 'logical topology', however, some confusion may result from this practice in certain situations since, by definition, the term 'logical topology' refers to the apparent path that the data takes between nodes in a network while the term 'signal topology' generally refers to the actual path that the signals (e.g., optical, electrical, electromagnetic, etc.) take when propagating between nodes. Example

Logical topology
The logical topology, in contrast to the "physical", is the way that the signals act on the network media, or the way that the data passes through the network from one device to the next without regard to the physical interconnection of the devices. A network's logical topology is not necessarily the same as its physical topology. For example, twisted pair Ethernet is a logical bus topology in a physical star topology layout. While IBM's Token Ring is a logical ring topology, it is physically set up in a star topology.

A local area network (LAN) links computers in relatively close proximity in order to share files, printers, other resources, and online access. LANs are used at home and in business and can be either wired or wireless. Due to the ubiquitous use of acronyms that have become virtual words, many use the term “LAN network” even though redundant. Attaching “network” to the acronym can remind people new to networking what the acronym refers to. This article will use the term while noting for the reader that the correct usage is LAN. A LAN network will allow computers in a home or office to talk to one another, pass files, use a common database, and share a printer or fax machine, to name a few advantages. A high-speed Internet account can also be shared on a LAN to provide online access to all computers connected to the network. So how does a LAN work? In network architecture one main computer is designated as a server, and all other computers are called clients. The server and clients must all be connected to an external hub, a kind of box that acts as a junction. Now that the computers have a junction to operate through, they need a traffic cop to route traffic. Thus, every hub contains what is known as a router. In order to route traffic across the LAN network, each computer on the network must have a unique address. This unique address is supplied by a network card, commonly installed inside each computer. The network card not only supplies a unique address, but also uses a language or protocol to speak to the hub/router. The hub/router and network cards must all speak the same language or be compatible with the same network protocol or standard to work. With the hub/router in place, and all network cards installed, the LAN network is ready to be configured for use in order to share files or resources. If online access is desired, the hub/router must be connected to a high-speed modem. Alternately, one can purchase a high-speed modem with a hub and router built-in. A LAN network can be wired or wireless. If setting up a wired network, all computers must be connected to the hub/router using Ethernet cabling. This can get expensive if cabling must be run through walls or ceilings. The alternative is a wireless LAN, which communicates via radio waves. Before purchasing network devices, one must decide if the LAN will be wired or wireless. Wired network cards feature an Ethernet port for cabling, while wireless network cards and hub/routers contain radios for sending and receiving radio transmissions. If the LAN network is to be wireless, it will operate using a set of standards known as IEEE 802.11. Within the 802.11 standards there are different flavors, with the newest

being 802.11n. This standard is replacing the older 802.11g standard, with 802.11n being faster and broadcasting over a wider range. It’s wisest to build a wireless LAN network using the newest standard to future proof the investment. As of spring 2009, that means all network devices should be 802.11n compatible. A network card or router that only supports the older 802.11g standard will not work in an 802.11n network, unless the hub/router supports both 802.11g and 802.11n protocols. The packaging or specifications of wireless network devices should clearly state which protocols are supported. Some devices carry a Wi-Fi certification issued by the Wi-Fi Alliance, the organization responsible for overseeing wireless standards. These products are guaranteed to be fully compliant, having undergone testing. Products that do not carry the certification will still state which protocols they support and might be less expensive, as the certification process adds to the cost of the product. If setting up a business LAN, certified network devices might be more desirable.

A Metropolitan Area Network or MAN is a network designed to cover a metropolitan area or campus and provide network access throughout the area. Many college campus networks would be classified as a MAN because they have multiple buildings spread out geographically, sometimes throughout the community. A MAN is larger than a local area network (LAN) which would typically be found in a corporate office or even in some homes. MANs are also smaller than a Wide Area Network (WAN), which is a network that stretches long distances, often between multiple business sites within different communities. For large companies, the WAN networks they employ can cover the entire globe. MAN networks use a different standard for communications; 802.6 as assigned by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), which uses a different bus technology to transmit and receive data than most larger or smaller networks. This allows MAN networks to operate more efficiently than they might if they were simply LAN networks linked together. The IEEE is the body that assigns standards to electrical or electronic technologies. The standard simply means that any items which are used in conjunction with a published standard will use the same methodology . When the IEEE creates a standard, input is received from interested third parties who wish to bring a technology to the main stream. The IEEE then uses a closed environment to test and ensure the standard will work as needed. Many cities throughout the United States are creating or looking to create MANs to allow Wireless access throughout the city. Philadelphia has been working with this technology, as have New York City’s Central Park, and Google® within the community of Mountain View California. Because of the huge growth of wireless technology and the increases in the number of Internet and network users, the use of MAN networks will likely continue to grow well into the future. Someday perhaps there will be a network that extends from coast to coast which may, if all connected to the same network, be considered a metropolitan area network.

A Wide Area Network (WAN) is a communication network made up of computers that are non-local to one another, exchanging data across a wide area or great distance. The most common example is the Internet, though a WAN need not be global to qualify as a wide area network. Since computer acronyms have become virtual words, the terminology “WAN network” is often used in the public sector, even though redundant. For those new to these acronyms, adding the word “network” can be a reminder of what a WAN is, so while this article uses the common term, the proper term is WAN, pronounced like ran with a “W.” Computers interoperate on a WAN network by using a set of standards or protocols for communication. Each computer on the WAN is assigned a unique address known as an Internet Protocol (IP) address. When a computer sends a request out on the WAN network, it gets routed to a specific server that hosts the requested information. The server responds by sending the information back to the IP address of the requesting computer. The architecture of the Internet, the most familiar WAN, is non-centralized by design, making it nearly impossible to destroy. Like a freeway system in a large metropolis, if one freeway or information highway is taken out, data traffic is automatically re-routed around the breakdown through alternate routes. The highways, in the case of the Internet, are actually leased telephone lines and a combination of other technologies and structures including smaller networks that are linked by the WAN network to become part of the whole. Some examples of smaller networks in the WAN include Municipal Area Networks (MANs), Campus Area Networks (CANs) and Local Area Networks (LANs). MANs provide connectivity throughout a city or regional area for public access to the Internet, while CANs offer connectivity to students and faculty for on-site resources and online access. LANs can be either private or public, but are usually private networks with optional online access. The home or office network is a good example of a LAN. A LAN can also become a WAN if, for example, a company with headquarters in both Los Angeles and Chicago links their two LANs together over the Internet. This geographic distance would qualify the network as a WAN. The linked LANs can use encryption software to keep their communications private from the public Internet, creating a Virtual Private Network (VPN). This technology of creating a secure, encrypted channel through the Internet to link LANs is sometimes called tunneling. A Personal Area Network (PAN) is created by Bluetooth technology to wirelessly link personal devices together for interoperability. You might use Bluetooth to send print jobs from a laptop to a printer, for example, or to synchronize a personal digital assistant with your computer. Bluetooth can also be used to share Internet access between devices, and therefore also plays a part in the many technologies that can contribute to a WAN network, more properly known as a WAN.

The Client Server Architecture
The Internet revolves around the client-server architecture. Your computer runs software called the client and it interacts with another software known as the server located at a remote computer. The client is usually a browser such as Internet Explorer, Netscape Navigator or Mozilla. Browsers interact with the server using a set of instructions called protocols. These protocols help in the accurate transfer of data through requests from a browser and responses from the server. There are many protocols available on the

Internet. The World Wide Web, which is a part of the Internet, brings all these protocols under one roof. You can, thus, use HTTP, FTP, Telnet, email etc. from one platform your web browser.

Some common Internet protocols
• • • •

HTTP (HyperText transfer Protocol): used on the World Wide Web (WWW) for transfering web pages and files contained in web pages such as images. FTP (File Transfer protocol): employed for transfering files from one machine to the other. SMTP (Simple Mail Transport Protocol): used for email. Telnet Protocol: Used to open telnet sessions.

The web employs a connection-less protocol, which means that after every client-server interaction the connection between the two is lost. Let us now examine the client-server inter-communication with three models.

Model #1 of the client-server architecture - Static HTML pages

The client (browser) requests for an HTML file stored on the remote machine through the server software. The server locates this file and passes it to the client. The client then displays this file on your machine. In this case, the HTML page is static. Static pages do not change until the developer modifies them.

Model #2 of the client-server architecture - CGI Scripts

The scenario is slightly different for CGI applications. Here the server has to do more work since CGI programs consume the server machine's processing power. Let us suppose you come across a searchable form on a web page that runs a CGI program. Let us also suppose you type in the word 'computers' as the search query. Your browser sends your request to the server. The server checks the headers and locates the necessary CGI program and passes it the data from the request including your search query "computers". The CGI program processes this data and returns the results to the

server. The server then sends this formatted in HTML to your browser which in turn displays the HTML page. Thus the CGI program generates a dynamic HTML page. The contents of the dynamic page depend on the query passed to the CGI program.

Model #3 of the client-server architecture - Server side scripting technologies

The third case also involves dynamic response generated by the use of server side technologies. There are many server side technologies today. Active Server Pages (ASP): A Microsoft technology. ASP pages typically have the extension .asp. Personal Home Pages (PHP): An open source technology. PHP pages typically have .php, .phtml or .php3 file name extensions. Java Server Pages: .jsp pages contain Java code. Server Side Includes (SSI): Involves the embedding of small code snippets inside the HTML page. An SSI page typically has .shtml as its file extension. With these server technologies it has become easier to maintain Web pages especially helpful for a large web site. The developer needs to embed the server-side language code inside the HTML page. This code is passed to the appropriate interpreter which processes these instructions and generates the final HTML displayed by the browser. Note, the embedded server-script code is not visible to the client (even if you check the source of the page) as the server sends ONLY the HTML code. Let's look at PHP as an example. A request sent for a PHP page from a client is passed to the PHP interpreter by the server along with various program variables. The interpreter then processes the PHP code and generates a dynamic HTML output. This is sent to the server which in turn redirects it to the client. The browser is not aware of the functioning of the server. It just receives the HTML code, which it appropriately formats and displays on your computer.

Advantages and disadvantages of networking
There are so many benefits with networking it is little wonder that it has become the most highly used tool in Executive and Management job hunting. Advantages are as follows: 1. You can be afforded an opportunity not yet advertised therefore reducing the competition significantly. 2. A job may be specifically created for you based on an employer’s requirement.

3. You are in the enviable position of focussing attention on the qualities and strengths you possess. 4. Networking provides social contact and stimulation. 5. Rather than having to make a cold call or attend an interview with people who are unknown to you, you will have a referral that will make the process easier. 6. Openings are created for you to be opportunistic and flexible. You must actively listen to the communication that is going on around you. 7. Networking is a two way process that can enable you to help others. 8. Networking is a proactive job search method. 9. Networking puts you in control, setting your own pace and course. It is less stressful than sifting through tons of advertisements and is far more productive over time. Unfortunately as in all aspects of life, networking has its disadvantages too. Disadvantages are as follows: 1. While networking is a very effective technique one must always be aware of the possibility of indiscretion. Choose your contacts wisely and ensure that you maintain confidentiality at all times. 2. Networking can be a waiting game where you have to wait it out patiently for the right opportunity or the right contact to come available. To weigh it up you can clearly see that the advantages greatly outweigh the disadvantages. Put your thoughts together and develop a networking contact list and begin this proactive process and take control of your job search.

What is Internet
The Internet, sometimes called simply "the Net," is a worldwide system of computer networks - a network of networks in which users at any one computer can, if they have permission, get information from any other computer (and sometimes talk directly to users at other computers). It was conceived by the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) of the U.S. government in 1969 and was first known as the ARPANET. The original aim was to create a network that would allow users of a research computer at one university to be able to "talk to" research computers at other universities. A side benefit of ARPANet's design was that, because messages could be routed or rerouted in more than one direction, the network could continue to function even if parts of it were destroyed in the event of a military attack or other disaster. Today, the Internet is a public, cooperative, and self-sustaining facility accessible to hundreds of millions of people worldwide. Physically, the Internet uses a portion of the total resources of the currently existing public telecommunication networks. Technically, what distinguishes the Internet is its use of a set of protocols called TCP/IP (for Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol). Two recent adaptations of Internet technology, the intranet and the extranet, also make use of the TCP/IP protocol. For many Internet users, electronic mail (e-mail) has practically replaced the Postal Service for short written transactions. Electronic mail is the most widely used application on the Net. You can also carry on live "conversations" with other computer users, using Internet Relay Chat (IRC). More recently, Internet telephony hardware and software allows real-time voice conversations. The most widely used part of the Internet is the World Wide Web (often abbreviated "WWW" or called "the Web"). Its outstanding feature is hypertext, a method of instant

cross-referencing. In most Web sites, certain words or phrases appear in text of a different color than the rest; often this text is also underlined. When you select one of these words or phrases, you will be transferred to the site or page that is relevant to this word or phrase. Sometimes there are buttons, images, or portions of images that are "clickable." If you move the pointer over a spot on a Web site and the pointer changes into a hand, this indicates that you can click and be transferred to another site.

What is Intranet
This is a network that is not available to the world outside of the Intranet. If the Intranet network is connected to the Internet, the Intranet will reside behind a firewall and, if it allows access from the Internet, will be an Extranet. The firewall helps to control access between the Intranet and Internet to permit access to the Intranet only to people who are members of the same company or organisation. In its simplest form, an Intranet can be set up on a networked PC without any PC on the network having access via the Intranet network to the Internet. For example, consider an office with a few PCs and a few printers all networked together. The network would not be connected to the outside world. On one of the drives of one of the PCs there would be a directory of web pages that comprise the Intranet. Other PCs on the network could access this Intranet by pointing their browser (Netscape or Internet Explorer) to this directory - for example U:\inet\index.htm. From then onwards they would navigate around the Intranet in the same way as they would get around the Internet.

The end

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