Last week, we learnt about computer network. In other words, we learnt about computer networking. Computer networking is connecting a computer with other computers or other devices to enable them to communicate with each other, between:
- Computer devices/equipments
- Transmission media to send/control data/signals,
- Communication devices to transmit/send data from sources to destinations
For your information, computer network is a collection of computers and other hardware devices that are connected together to share hardware, software, and data as well as to communicate with one another. A basic network is composed of two computers connected by a cable to allow the exchange of data and share the resources.
The network is literally classified into four. They are:
1. PAN (personal area network) – covers the network of personal devices such as printer and mobile devices.
2. LAN (local area network) – covers relatively small geographical area such as home, school and also office.
3. WAN (wide area network) – covers large geographical area and consist of two or more LAN connected together using communication technology. Internet is the largest WAN.
4. MAN (metropolitan area network) – network designed to service the large area such as cities. Consist of multiple LAN and the size is between LAN and WAN.
There are 5 network components that are compulsory in computer networking. They are:
a. Terminals, Workstations, Computers, and other devices (end nodes)
-normally refers to data sources and destinations.
-e.g. personal computers, terminals, workstation, computers.
b. Transmission Media ( for transmitting data and control signals)
- The physical media used to transmit data in a networked environment. There are 2 types of it, bounded/guided (twisted pair, coaxial, fiber optic) and unbounded/unguided (satellite communication, infrared signal, microwave radio)
c. Software to control data transmission
- Network software is the information, data or programming used to make it possible for computers to communicate or connect to one another. Network software is used to efficiently share information among computers.
-two types (NOS/network operating system and also client software)
d. Network electronics (intermediate devices for routing data from source to destinations)
- devices that controls data transmission from sources to destinations
-also act as interface between different transmission media or communication protocol
-e.g. hub, router, bridge, switch, gateway
e. Network Architecture Standards (Standards to enable devices made by different companies to work/communicate with each other)
- Architecture: blueprint of standards for a network consisting of items such as choice of media, media interfaces, encoding methods, transmission protocols, routing protocols, etc.
-Needed to ensure interoperability between various devices and equipment made by different vendors.