Thursday, September 3, 2009

Networks Components

A PC network is used to share resources such as files and printers. A PC network is normally based on Ethernet or Token Ring and consists of a number of components:

  1. Cabling is used to physically connect the components together. A common type of cable used in both Ethernet and Token Ring is twisted pair.
  2. Clients such as PCs or Macintoshes can be used together on the same network. One often distinguishes between the hardware and the software components of a client. One important hardware component is the NIC, which stands for Network Interface Card, inside the client. The software component responsible for communication consists of two parts: the operating system and communication software. These two together are called Network Operating System. An example of a Network Operating System on a client is DOS and IPX software.
  3. Servers are used to share documents and programs. Servers are often dedicated powerful computers. There are different types of Network Operating Systems for a server. Examples are Novell Netware, Windows NT and IBM LANServer.
  4. Printers are common components found in a PC network.
  5. Gateways, not seen in this picture, are used to translate between two applications or protocols. Gateways are used for communication between different protocols.

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