Topologies and Network Technology
Monday, August 8, 2011
Topologies and network technology
In every project, it is important to have a goal, and that goal should be the foundation on which a project team spring into action. The foundation should involve an infrastructural plan, and the usability of the components of the infrastructure. A project plan, as in any other plan, should outline the premise of the project and answer some basic questions like why a particular project is being proposed, what the project will accomplish, who will be the members of the project team and their responsibilities, and when the project will start and terminate. When it comes to a network design, the same principle of project planning applies, and a network topology is an important part of a successful network design. Network topology is the elemental organization of a network; it dictates the media that the network uses, the type of channel it accesses, the architecture of the network, and its operating speed (Tomsho, Tittel, & Johnson, 2004). A network topology deals with the physical layout of the network’s computers, cables, and many more components; a network topology also deals with how the components communicate with each other (Tomsho, et al., 2004). A network topology gives a diagrammatical picture of the network’s physical interconnections. A network topology can be discussed in its physical and logical forms; the physical form deals with the physical arrangement of cables, and the logical form deals with path on which the data travels between the network’s devices (Tomsho, et al., 2004). Network topology has standard types and variant types of the major types. Standard topologies
The bus, star, and ring topologies are the major topologies that all networks that are operational use (Tomsho, et al., 2004). Variations and extensions of these major topologies do exist; however, they are the basis on which other branches of topology derive. Because technology in general and network technology in particular are very diverse, the topologies have major differences in their forms and functions.
A bus topology is the most common methodology of computers interconnecting to each other on a network; it is a network design that involves a linear connection, in which the computer on the network connect to each other via a one cable segment (Tomsho, et al., 2004). Because of the way a network works, sending electronic signals (data) from one computer to the other, the communication in a bus topology becomes vital to the effective use of such topology. The bus network operates on a passive network topology, in that instead of receiving signals, processing them, and sending them back the host, it listens to the data being transmitted (Tomsho, et al., 2004). A bus topology network is not responsible for the movement of data from one device to the other. The disadvantage of this is that a bus topology is passive, and the advantage is that one defective computer does not bring down the entire network (Tomsho, et al., 2004). A break in the cable segment that connects the computers in a bus topology will however cause the entire network to fail (Tomsho, et al., 2004). A bus topology also has a disadvantage one computer transmitting data at a time; what this does is make all network users to equally share transmission time (Tomsho, et al., 2004). The downside of this is that the more devices on a bus network means a slower network, as every user shares a piece of the available transmission time.
Star topology. The most stable and most dominant topology of today’s network is the star topology. In a star topology, all of the network devices are connected to a central hub and the central hub retransmits the data that it receives down to the dependent devices. Like the bus topology, all the computers on the star topology hear the transmission signal; however, while the bus...
References: Tomsho, G., Tittel, E. & Johnson, D. (2004). Guide to networking essentials (4th ed.).
Boston, MA: Thomson Learning.
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