Computer Network Topology

Published: 14th January 2006
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The way how computer connect each other is called topology of network. Network topology refers to how physical layout of the network is organised. It is important to choose the right topology for how the network will be used. Each topology has its own characteristic.

To choose the right topology we must see the factors that influenced it. The factors are the layout, cost installation, type of cable and troubleshooting techniques. These factors determine how network will be established and how much will it cost.

The most common topologies:


Bus Physical Topology
Best used in small area of network. Bus topology also known in Mac world as daisy-chaining.In the bus topology the cable runs from computer to computer making each computer a link of a chain. Different types of cable determine way of network can be connected. If your network using Thicknet coaxial cable, then the bus network will have a central backbone cable. If you using smaller cable (Taps) it will have backbone to each PC in the network. The biggest problem with bus topology is that if it's not terminated correctly then your network can't transmit correctly.
Star Topology
In the star topology, each server and workstation connected into central hub that provides connection to another device connected to the hub and it shapes like a star. This type of topology are easy to work with and can pin point problem location also isolate problem if it occours on workstation. A large number of wires needed to connect the network is it's major drawback.
Ring Topology
A ring network is a topology of computer networks where each user is connected to two other users, so as to create a ring. The most popular example is a token ring network. It is not widely used due to inefficient compared to other topology because the data have to travel through more node. The advantages of this topology is each node have equal access and capable of high speed data transfer also can span larger than other topology. The disadvantage is the ring topology is a very expensive technology and not efficient.

Besides this topology there are uncommon topology being used in public for example mesh and fully connected topology that are mostly used in military technology since they are very effective technology and yet very expensive.--FA


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