Introduction to Networks
* Lesson 2 - COMMON COMPUTER TERMINOLOGY 2.4 -
INTRODUCTION TO NETWORKS  Introduction to Networks
Consider a scenario where an organization has 10 employees. These
employees use computers to perform daily tasks. They also need to print
data frequently. Instead of giving each employee a printer, which would be
expensive, all computers can be connected to a single printer.
You can connect your computer to other computers to share information and
hardware components. A group of computers and associated devices that are
linked together to facilitate sharing information is called a network.
Networks can also be used to share data and devices such as printers. You
can also communicate with other computer users on the network. A typical
network has the following three components:
_Server_. The main computer on a network that provides services to other
computers on the network. A server decides which computers are allowed to
access the hardware and software on the network.
_Workstation_. A computer connected to a network. You use a workstation to
access the hardware and software on a network.
_Communication channel_. A path or link that connects computers or
peripheral devices, such as printers and disk drives, to transfer
information. Cables are commonly used as communication channels in a
network, but networks can also transfer information through wireless
Depending upon the area covered, a network can be categorized as a local
area network (LAN) or a wide area network (WAN). Scroll down to read each
A LAN connects devices within a limited area, such as a home or a small
group of offices. It commonly includes computers and shared resources such
as printers and scanners.
A WAN is a network that connects devices in geographically separated
areas. You can use the resources of a WAN to connect two or more LANs by
using long wires, optical cables, and satellites. Many organizations use a
WAN to connect their networks across different countries. The Internet is
an example of a WAN.
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