Types of Networks

Depends on the geographical area covered by a network determines the type of network. There are three types of networks. They are Local Area Network (LAN), Metropolitan Area Network (MAN), and Wide Area Network (WAN).

LAN. LAN's are typically used to interconnect computers within a relatively small area, such as within a building, office or campus. Several LANs can be connected together in a building or on a compus to extend the connectivity. A LAN is considered a private network. A LAN typically operates at a speed of 10 Mbps to 100 Mbps. The distance covered is up to 10 kM. The most popular LANs in use today are Ethernet, Token Ring and Gigabit Ethernet. It uses cable media.

MAN. As the name implies, this network covers a metropolitan city. It cover approximately 100 miles, connecting multiple networks which are located in different locations of a city or town. A typical MAN operates at a speed of 1.5 to 150 Mbps. It uses different hardware and transmission media.

WAN. WAN cover a large geographical area, such as an entire country or continent. A WAN can range from 100 km to 1000 km and the speed varies from 1.5 Mbps to 2.4 Gbps. WANs may use lines based from telephone companies or public switched data networks (PSDN) or satellites for communication links.

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