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Chapter 11

COMMERCE 2KA3 Chapter Notes - Chapter 11: Computer Network, Wide Area Network

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Chapter 11: Networks, Telecommunications, and Wireless Computing
Telecommunication systems: enable the transmission of data over public or
private networks
Network: a communications, data exchange, and resource-sharing system
created by linking two or more computers and establishing standards, or
protocols, so that they can work together.
Network Basics
A network provides two principle benefits: the ability to communicate and the
ability to share
Networks are differentiated by the following
oArchitecture: peer-to-peer, client/server
oTopology: bus, star, ring, hybrid, wireless
oProtocols: Ethernet, Transmission control Protocol/Internet Protocol
oMedia: coaxial, twisted-pair, fibre optic
Network Types
The two primary types of network architectures are: peer-to-peer networks
and client/server networks

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Peer-to-Peer Networks
Peer-to-peer (P2P) network: any network without a central file server and in
which all computers in the network have access to the public files located on
a ll other workstations
Includes the sharing of processing, memory, and storage, and the supporting
of collaboration among vast numbers of distributed computers
Client/Server Networks
Client: a computer that is designed to request information from a server
Server: a computer that is dedicated to providing information in response to
external requests
Client/server network: a model for applications in which the bulk of the back-
end processing, such as performing a physical search of a database, takes
place on a server, while the front-end processing, which involves
communicating with the users, is handled by clients
Network operating system (NOS): the operating system that runs a network,
steering information between computers and managing security and users
Most business applications written today use the client/server model
Packet switching: occurs when the sending computer divides a message into
a number of efficiently sized units called packets, each of which contains the
address of the destination computer
Router: an intelligent connecting device that examines each packet of data it
receives and then decides which way to send it onward toward its destination
A network topology: refers to the geometric arrangement of the actual
physical organization of the computers (and other network devices) in a
The five most common network topologies
oBus: All devices are connected to a central cable, called the bus or
backbone. Bus networks are relatively inexpensive and easy to install
for small networks

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oStar: all devices are connected to a central device, called a hub. Star
networks are relatively easy to install and manage, but bottlenecks can
occur because all data must pass through the hub
oRing: All devices are connected to one another in the shape of a closed
loop, so that each diveice is connected directly to two other devices,
one of either side of it. Ring topologies are relatively expensive and
difficult to install, but they offer high bandwidth and can span large
oGroups of star-configured workstations are connected to a linear bus
backbone cable, combining the characteristics of the bus and star
oWireless: devices are connected by a receiver/ transmitter to a special
network interface card that transmits signals between a computer and
a server, all within an acceptable transmission range
Protocol: a standard that specifies the format of data as well as the rules to
be followed during transmission
Interoperability: the capability of two or more computer systems to share
data and resources, even though they are made by different manufacturers.
Most popular is TCP/IP
Ethernet: physical and data layer technology for LAN networking. Ethernet is
the most widely installed LAN access method
Ethernet’s protocol has the following characteristics
oEasy to understand, implement, manage, and maintain
oAllows low-cost network implementations
Provides extensive flexibility for network installation
Guarantees successful interconnection and operation of standards-compliant
products, regardless of manufacturer
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