Computer network technology allows institutions, businesses, and even individuals to transfer data digitally with the help of information systems. Transmission of data can be done in three modes. When the data is transferred between two or more computers using cables, we refer to that as a computer network.
Similarly, when data is transferred between two or more mobile devices using cables or wires, that is called a mobile network. When data transmission is done between mobile devices and computers, then it is known as a device network
In this article, we shall take a closer look at what Network Technology is, and how it functions.
What is Networking Technology?
The technology that is used to manage and transmit data over computer networks is known as Network Technology. A variety of industries use computer hardware and system software to maintain a network creating a need for specialists to manage them. Network technicians know how to install, configure and troubleshoot network technology and this can be used to send digital data like audio, data, and visual files.
The expansion of a network mainly includes taking into consideration estimates of hardware costs, training, installation, security, and accounts management. When a network is installed, the technicians have a responsibility to take care of the network operation by providing technical support to employees in the organization. This could include training to ensure that employees can fix minor networking errors.
Types of Network Technology
Network Technology can initially be done based on two aspects; transmission and scale.
Network Technology based on Transmission
Network Technology based on Transmission is effected using two concepts namely;
Point to Point
When the sender and the receiver are connected directly, data transmission can be done with the help of a guided medium that is used for wired networks. The transmission can also be done with an unguided medium in the case of a wireless network.
Multipoint transmission is done by several nodes that are connected directly in a linear manner with the help of a common medium.
This type of transmission mainly works on any of these two connections like time-sharing. In the first connection, every node is accessible with a separate time slot to converse while in the second connection, the communication between the nodes can be done simultaneously at a time.
Network Technology Based on Scale
The network technology based on the scale can be done using concepts like LAN, MAN, WAN, PAN, and VPN.
Local Area Network
Local Area Network (LAN) uses devices like computers, laptops, and mobile phones that are connected in a small scale area which ranges from 100m to 10km
The main elements of LAN include;
- Peripheral devices like printers and scanners.
- A HUB or the middle of a network is responsible for attracting the signals. It is smart enough to transmit the data packets from the sender to the receiver.
- Cables like twisted pair, optical fiber, and coaxial cables are used as a backbone for networking cables due to their high bandwidth capacity.
- Network Interface Card-NIC
MAN (Metropolitan Area Network)
A network where numerous Local Area Networks located in a single geographic area are united jointly through a networking device is known as Bridge. A bridge forms a Metropolitan Area Network.
WAN(Wide Area Network)
A network where numerous MANs are united jointly through a networking device is known as a route. A route forms a Wide Area Network. There are two types of WANs namely;
- Public WAN: This kind of WAN is handled through government divisions. Service providers provide Internet access using broadband services such as DSL, cable, and satellite access
- Private WAN: Networks use Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) technology by avoiding the public network which increases the level of cyber security.
PAN (Personal Area Network)
Personal Area Network, or PAN, is a computer network that enables the communication between computer devices near a person. PANs can be wired, such as USB, or they can be wireless, such as Bluetooth and ultrawideband. The range of a PAN typically is a few meters.
VPN (Virtual Private Network)
A virtual private network, or VPN, is an encrypted connection over the Internet from a device to a network. The encrypted connection helps ensure that sensitive data is safely transmitted. It prevents unauthorized people from eavesdropping on the traffic and allows the user to conduct work remotely.
Advantages of Network Technology
It improves communication & accessibility of information.
Networking, especially with full access to the web, allows ways of communication that would simply be impossible before it was developed. For instance, Instant messaging can now allow users to talk in real-time and send files to other people wherever they are in the world.
It allows for convenient resource sharing.
Since the technology involves computer-based work, users are assured that the resources that large organizations want to get across will be completely shared by connecting to a computer network which their audience is also using.
Files can be easily shared.
Networking Technology allows easier accessibility for people to share their files, which greatly helps them with saving more time and effort since they could execute file sharing more accordingly and effectively.
It is highly inexpensive
Installing networking software on your device would not cost too much, as you are assured that it lasts and you can effectively share information with your peers. Also, there is no need to change the software regularly, as mostly it is not required to do so.
Disadvantages of Networking Technology
It lacks independence & robustness.
Because Networking Technology is based on computer operations, most people will be relying more on computer work, instead of exerting an effort for their tasks at hand. Aside from this, they will be dependent on the main file server, which means that, if it breaks down, the system would become useless, making users idle.
It creates security difficulties
Because there would be a huge number of people who would be using a computer network to get and share some of their files and resources, a certain user’s security would be always at risk. This is particularly common for open public networks.
Risk of viruses & malware.
There are often instances that stored files are corrupted due to exposure to computer viruses. Thus, network administrators should conduct regular check-ups on the system as well as the stored files at the same time.
It needs an efficient operator.
For a computer network to work efficiently and optimally, it requires high technical skills and know-how of its operations and administration. A person just having basic skills cannot connect and configure networks.
It needs an exclusive setup.
Though computer networks are said to be an inexpensive system, that is only true once they are up and running. Their initial setup cost can still be high depending on the number of computers to be connected. Expensive devices, such as routers, switches, and hubs can add up to the cost
Network technology will always provide fast and convenient means of transferring and sharing information. It can be a source of livelihood with a wide and growing job market. Users, however, do need to be cautious when dealing with this technology. They should remember that often relying on this system can put them at certain risks caused by its flaws and other malfunctions.