In the world of computers, networking is the practice of linking two or more computing devices together for the purpose of sharing data. Networks are built with a mix of computer hardware and computer software. Networking software applications are available to manage and monitor networks of all sizes, from the smallest home networks to the largest enterprise networks.
1. Local Area Networks (LANs): These connect over a relatively small geographical are, typically connecting computers within a single office or building. In most cases they connect to a common electronic connection- commonly known as a network backbone. LAN's can connect to other networks either directly or through a WAN or MAN. Most LANs connect workstations and personal computers. 2. Metropolitan Area Networks (MAN's): These connect networks around a town or city. Short for Metropolitan Area Network, a data network designed for a town or city. In terms of geographic breadth, MANs are larger than local-area networks (LANs), but smaller than wide-area networks (WANs). An example of a Man is the Eastman (Edinburgh and Stirling MAN) network that connects universities and colleges. 3. Wide Area Networks (WANs) : These connect networks over a large geographical area, such as between different buildings, towns or even countries. 4. A campus area network (CAN) is a computer network made up of an interconnection of LANs within a limited geographical area. In the case of a university campus-based campus network, the network is likely to link a variety of campus buildings including, for example, academic colleges or departments, the university library, and student residence halls. 5. A personal area network (PAN) is a computer network used for communication among computer and different information technological devices close to one person. Some examples of devices that are used in a PAN are personal computers, printers, fax machines, telephones,...
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