are some foundational concepts and components of a computer network?
network is made up of a group of devices (usually called Nodes) which are
interconnected through a communication link. Nodes can be any peripheral
devices like printers, fax machines, or computers; any device capable of
sending or receiving data over a network (TestOut Network Pro, 2012).
lot of networks use distributed processing, which means a task is distributed
among multiple computers in order to increase the performance, efficiency,
reliability and security of the network. Communication between two or more
computers is usually done through a link. This link is the communication medium
between the machines and can be established as either point to point or multipoint.
A point to point communication provides a dedicated link for communication
between the two devices (e.g. communication between a TV and remote control via
infra-red). Multipoint communication is when multiple devices share a single
link and the whole bandwidth of the link is distributed among the connected
devices, (e.g. the sharing of a printer among multiple computers in an office).
Topology of a network is when the design of the network is laid out physically
& Rathore, 2010). Various topological types are mentioned below (Pandya,
topology is when each communicating device/node has a dedicated point to point
link/carrier to every other device. In Star topology, devices are not linked
directly with each other rather they have a dedicated point to point link
connected to a central hub (controller). For a Bus topology, a single cable
acts as a backbone to provide a link to all connected devices in a network. In a
Ring topology, every device is connected to its immediate neighbor device
physically or logically.
These are the different types of
(Metropolitan Area Network)
(Wide Area Network)
Area Networks are the smallest type of network and are privately owned to be
used for personal computers or company offices in a single building.
Metropolitan Area Networks may cover an entire city and are larger than LAN but
smaller than WAN. An example of a MAN is a cable television network implemented
in a city. A Wide Area Network is the largest network, it spans a large
geographical area and it contains a large collection of hosts to run any
application program, hosts are connected by a subnet and the host is owned by a
In order to communicate over a
network, five basic components are required:
Message is the information that needs to be communicated. Messages can be in
the form of pictures, numbers, audio or video etc.
This is the device which sends the message. It can be any computer, microphone,
telephone, fax, video camera etc.
The devices which receive message or information is the receiver. E.g.
computer, telephone, television etc.
Medium: This is the mode of communication through which the information
traverses e.g. radio waves, infra-red etc.
Protocol is a set of rules agreed upon by either party for communication. It is
basically an agreement for the communication to happen.
are the components of an internet protocol version four (IPv4) IP address?
is identified by a unique network number and every machine connected to this
network must have a unique IP (Internet Protocol) address. IP addresses are
created whenever we register a device to a network.
address is a 32-bit IP address which uniquely identifies an interface of a
network on a machine. IPV4 address has a dotted-decimal format written in
decimal digit and is formatted as four 8-bit fields separated by periods. Every
8-bit field represents a byte of IPV4.
An IPV4 address is divided into two
parts, host and network. Here’s an example of IPV4:
Network section consists of two bytes of an IPV4 address. It identifies a
unique number assigned to a network. The Host section of the IPV4 address is
the number which is uniquely assigned to every host that we own. It uniquely
identifies the machines on a network. For every host/node on a network, the network
address number would be same, but the host number would be different. Sometimes
local networks with a large number of hosts are also divided into subnets. If
we opt to divide a network into subnets, then it would be necessary to assign a
should a network administrator assign static IP addresses to network devices?
Usually, a static IP address is
assigned for very small networks, network devices and servers. If a network
contains a lot of devices it might pose a challenge. Moreover, static IPs are
also assigned if a high level of security is required. If DHCP is the target of
most network hacker then, for security
reasons, all associated devices could be assigned a static IP. A static IP could
also be assigned if all the devices on a network are not going to be physically
moved. Assigning static IPs to a large organization would pose a huge
administrative burden. Static IPs give administrators a lot of control,
allowing them to whitelist devices based on their MAC addresses and also to
devise specific IP based rules in a firewall.
Pandya, K. (2013). Network
Structure or Topology. International Journal of Advance Research in Computer Science and
Management Studies, 1(2).
Razzaq, A., & Rathore,
M. S. (2010, September). An approach towards resource efficient virtual network
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Pro. (2012). Retrieved from http://www.testout.com/