Network Architecture

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Introduction
Network architecture is a combination of topology and protocols. In this paper, I will discuss topology, which is the defined as the shape of a network or how a network is laid out. Topology also consists of how the different components or nodes of a network are connected and how they communicate with each other. Topologies are either logical or physical. In addition, in the sections of this paper, I will compare and contrast some different conventional architecture and what types of topologies and protocols they use. Examples of some of these architectures are Ethernet, Token Ring, and FDDI, just to name a few.

Topologies Defined
There are five common types of physical topologies. They are mesh, star, bus, ring, and tree. Each topology differs in the way that each node is connected to each other and how they communicate to each other. Each one takes on its own shape, which contributes, not only to its name but also to the function of the specific topology. While these physical topologies refer to the way that the nodes are laid out or connected to each other, the logical topology refers to how signals act on the network media or how data is passed from one node to another along the network without regard for the physical position of the components or how they are connected. In this section, I will discuss the different types of physical topologies and their advantages or disadvantages. The table below shows diagrams of how the different physical topologies look and how they function. Mesh Topology Devices are connected with many redundant interconnections between network nodes. In a true mesh topology every node has a connection to every other node in the network. Star Topology All devices are connected to a central hub. Nodes communicate across the network by passing data through the hub. Bus Topology All devices are connected to a central cable, called the bus or backbone. Ring Topology All devices are connected to one another in the...
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