A computer network is considered as a set of techniques and hardware and software resources used to guarantee the connection between different computers or stations. This connection can be made either:
- In a physical way
- Via waves
Types of networks
Considering location first, then distance, and finally throughput.
We retain three types of networks:
- LAN (Local Area Network): it is a communication system that allows the connection between a few computers and their peripherals at a distance not exceeding a few kilometers. It was first used in the 1970s.
- MAN (Metropolitan Area Network): it is a wide-area telecommunications network that connects several nearby LANs.
- WAN (Wide Area Network): it is a nationwide network, covering large areas, and generally that of operators.
Benefits of a computer network
- File sharing: as main advantage is that the network allows us file sharing as well as access to remote files.
- Resource sharing: also a primary advantage of a computer network. For example, if there are three people in an office, each with their own computer, they will need three modems (Internet connection) and three printers, if they want to use the resources at the same time. the computer network offers a less expensive solution by providing resource sharing.
Disadvantages of a computer network
- Security: if the computer is connected to a network, hackers can gain unauthorized access
- Spread of viruses: A computer system in a network is affected by a computer virus, there is a great risk that other systems also getting affected. Viruses spread over a network easily this is due to the interconnection of workstations
- Expensive Setups: Sometimes in some computer networks architectures, the setup costs you a leg and an arm, it’s just too expensive
- Dependency: if a computer network fails, the system becomes useless.
Everyone should know better the pros and cons of computer networks, before setting one up for their personal or office use.