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Computer Network and Network Topology

, May 22, 2020 WAT
Last Updated 2020-06-18T18:56:48Z
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Computer network

When many computers are connected to each other through any one medium then it is called computer network. 
Computer networks can be divided into 4 parts based on geographical differences. E.g.


  • Personal Area Network (PAN)
  • Local Area Network (LAN)
  • Metropolitan Area Network (MAN)
  • Wide Area Network (WAN)


Personal Area Network - PAN:

A personal area network is a network system for exchanging information between different technology devices near a person. Its range is limited to 10 meters. Information devices used in personal area networks like laptops, PDAs, mobiles, printers etc. Personal area networks can be created at home, office or in the open.

Local Area Network - LAN:

If one or more computer networks are included in a particular building or campus, it will be known as the Local Area Network. The short form of this is LAN. A LAN can have all the computers on the same floor of a building or the computers on the floor near the same building as a company can have LAN. This network is used in small-medium office-court and business trade. Its main purpose is to share information and resources between devices. LANs can be made in small-medium offices and can be saved for devices like printers, modems, scanners, etc. Usually different devices are connected to the LAN through cheap cable. In the picture several computers are connected to a device called a hub via cable. Devices are usually connected to the local area network through a hub.

Metropolitan Area Network - MAN

The Metropolitan Area Network is a combination of several LAN networks that extend across an entire city or an area of ​​large size. In this case the lanes are in the same city. Through such networks, different networks can share their information at a very high speed. This network is mainly used in various government offices. Different devices in the local area network are connected directly to the network, but each site in the metropolitan area network is connected to the network. In this case usually the cable installed by the telephone company is used.

Wide Area Network - WAN:

Wide area networks are networks of computers or LANs located at different distances. Under One, computers can only be in one city or they can be scattered all over the world. The whole issue of WAN depends on the physical line, fiber optic cable, satellite transmission. Telephone lines, microwaves, or satellite communication systems are used as transmission media for wide area networks.



Network topology

The network topology is the positioning layout or connection layout between different computers in a computer network. 

There are 6 types of network topology, namely -


  • Bus Topology
  • Star Topology
  • Ring Topology
  • Tree Topology
  • Mesh Topology
  • Hybrid Topology


Star Network Topology

In the star topology, all computers are connected in one central location. This central network location has a device called a concentrator or hub. No computer can send data directly to another computer.

When a computer sends data to another computer, it first sends it to the hub. The hub sends that data to all computers or to the destination computer.

Advantages of ‌Star Network Topologyঃ

Even if a computer in the network is damaged, there is no interruption in the work of other parts of the network.

The network remains active even if any other part of the network is disconnected without a hub or switch.

Different types of cables can be used on the same network.

The network system is still active when any new connection or disconnection is made on the network.

Centrally network maintenance or troubleshooting is easy.


Disadvantages of Star Network Topology:

When the hub or switch goes bad, the whole network becomes inoperable.

This is an expensive method as Star Topology requires a large amount of cable.


Ring network topology

In this case the computers form a network connection to each other in a circular way through nodes (the point at which the computer is connected is called a node). Thus the latest computer is connected to the first. In such a topology, each device has a receiver and a transmitter that acts as a repeater. In this case, the responsibility of the repeater is to transfer the signal from one computer to its next computer.

Advantages of ring network topology:

Since every computer has an equal right to send data, no computer can monopolize the network.

No server is required on the network.

New connections can be made to the network system if necessary and this does not affect the efficiency of the network too much.


Disadvantages of ring network topology

When a computer is attacked by a problem in the ring network topology, the whole network becomes inoperable.

In the case of ring network topology, it is difficult to diagnose a problem in the network.

Network activity is interrupted when any computer is connected or removed from the network.

Ring network topology As the number of computers in a network increases, its transmission time also increases.

Ring network topologies require complex control software.

Bus network topology

In bus topology all computers (nodes) are connected to a connection line. Here the connection line is usually called the bus. When a computer sends a message to another computer, that message is transmitted through the signal connection line and reaches all the other computers. Other computers check that message and only the receiving computer receives that message. The bus topology can only send one computer message at a time. When a computer sends a message, others have to wait until it is finished. That is why when the number of computers in this network increases, the performance deteriorates.

Advantages of bus network topology

If one computer on the network breaks down, there is no difficulty in working on another computer.

The bus network topology requires less cable resulting in lower costs.

The network can be easily expanded by attaching a bus with a BNC barrel connector.

Repeaters can be used if necessary for bus expansion. This increases the value of the signal and the signal can travel further distances.

The connection of the bus network topology does not interfere with the operation of the entire network.

Disadvantages of bus network topology:

As the number of computers on the network increases, heavy traffic is generated and data transmission is disrupted.

There is no coordination in data transmission so any computer can send data, resulting in a lot of bandwidth loss in the network.

The BNC barrel connector weakens the flowing signal.

Problems caused by this topology are complex to diagnose.

Mesh or interconnected network topology

In the mesh network topology, all the computers on the network are directly or indirectly connected to each other.


Advantages of interconnected network topology:
Signals can be exchanged between any two nodes at high speed.
When a connection line of a computer is lost, the whole network is not connected.
It has a lot more certainty in data communication.
Any problem in the network can be solved very easily.

Advantages of Mesh Network Topology:

Network installation and configuration in this topology is quite complex.
Cable takes more so the cost is higher.


Tree Network Topology:

The tree topology is basically an extension of the star topology. This topology uses multiple hubs to connect all the computers to a special place called. All computers are controlled by a high-powered computer or server.

Advantages of ‌Tree Network Topologyঃ

The network of tree topologies can be easily expanded by creating new branches.

This type of network is very useful for office management.

Connecting or removing any new computers on this network does not disrupt the activity of the entire network.


Disadvantages of tree network topology:

The network becomes inoperable if any error occurs on the romnt or server computer.
Tree network topology organization is more complex than other topologies.


Hybrid network topology

The network topology consisting of bus, star, ring etc. is called hybrid network topology. The Internet is a hybrid network because it combines almost all types of topologies.


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