|A Plus Electronics
4845 Steeds Crossing Circle
Park City KS 67219
|Lifestyle Electronics For Your Home Or Office|
A Plus Electronics offers a variety of Network Services for the Office or Home
Networking today has opened a whole new world in data communications. Networking is simply connecting individual computers in a way so that they can share resources such as files, applications, and peripherals connected to the Local Area Network (LAN). The most popular and cost efficient type of network is an "Ethernet" network, which has created a large abundance of Ethernet products on the market today
Networking basically creates an environment to share information and resources. On a network, any connected PC can access all resources and devices that are part of that network. Whether you want to share Internet access, peripherals, information, or simply play multi-player games, networking will create a more efficient and higher performing way to achieve these goals.
A Local Area Network is the most convenient way to share information and resources. A LAN is a network that covers a "local" area, like a floor or building. It lets you easily transfer files between PCs, share printers, and share a modem among several users.
With the steady growth of cheaper networking products, creating a LAN has become easier and more cost effective than ever. The basic components of a network are: PC's, Cables, Network Interface Cards (NICs), Hubs or Switches, and Network Operating Systems (NOS)
(Windows 95, Artisoft Lantastic, Windows for Workgroups, etc.) Ideal for Small Office/Home Office (SOHO) environments. Each PC acts as an independent workstation that stores data on its own hard drive and shares it with all other PCs on the network. It is the easiest and most cost-effective way to install a network. Most PC users can set up and maintain this type of network very easily.
To really get the most out of two or more computers and all the devices you attach to them, a network opens a whole new world. A single color or laser printer can be shared between all the networked computers. Two people can surf the web at the same time. A parent can work on a presentation, while their child does homework. And most importantly you can play head-to-head multi-player games against your family and friends. The network makes these things possible.
What does it take to a build a network? With a minimum investment you can buy all the necessary hardware to start your own Home Network. The first thing you need to do is decide what technology you want to use. There is a technology that will best fit the way your family uses your computers and that will best fit your home.
Ethernet/Fast Ethernet- The Fastest and Least Expensive Choice. Ethernet lets people share. It lets them share all the complex data patterns that define files, web pages, DVD movies, and modem connections. It thus lets them share expensive hardware and Internet access accounts between multiple users.
Ethernet is the most popular type of networking technology available today. It comes in two types: Ethernet and Fast Ethernet. Ethernet is the oldest type, with a speed of 10Mbps (10 Million Bits per Second) with is roughly 200 times faster than a 56K modem. Fast Ethernet is 10 times faster than that at 100Mbps. Dual Speed Ethernet products allow each piece of the network to run at 10Mbps or 100Mbps, to ensure that any network device you have can be easily connected whether it's based on Fast Ethernet or Ethernet technology.
As the fastest and least expensive networking technology there is an abundance of Ethernet products on the market and with the wide adoption of Windows XP, it is relatively simple to build an Ethernet network. Windows XP provides the necessary networking software to allow things like drives and printers to be easily shared using Ethernet and Fast Ethernet.
When you pick up your telephone, you are tied into a giant network to get your messages across. The telephone network effectively creates a direct link between you and the person you are calling. In Ethernet every computer on the network is actually involved in the same conversation almost like a party line. As a result, Ethernet has a number of rules about who can talk when.
Basically every computer on the Ethernet network listens to the party line, and when no one else is talking it attempts to broadcast its message. If two computers try to talk at the same time, then a collision is created, which tells all of the computers to stop talking for a moment. After a random amount of time, the computers will try to talk again. Since every computer is waiting a different amount of time before they talk again, usually only one will start first. The other computers will wait for that one to finish before they attempt to speak. In Ethernet these rules are called Carrier-Sense Multiple Access with Collision Detection or CSMA/CD. This literally happens thousand of times a second.
So why build a network this way? Simply put, it allows you share a very large amount of between a number of machines. This makes for a much more cost-effective network. If you want to give dedicated bandwidth to each machine to reduce the collisions and give each computer its own private line, then you can always buy an Ethernet switch to further speed up your network.
Ethernet and Fast Ethernet networks are very fast. Fast Ethernet is actually faster than a normal EIDE hard drive in terms of the amount of data it can deliver. This makes it ideal for most any type of network use.
Internet Sharing: Sharing a single 56K Modem Internet connection between multiple users, for example, will only use about 1/200th of its bandwidth. With broadband technologies like ADSL or Cable Modems, Ethernet and Fast Ethernet are really the only choice right now. ADSL will typically provide from 128kbps to 8 Mbps and cable will provide from 8Mbps to 32Mbps, it depends on your provider. At these high speeds Ethernet and Fast Ethernet will be able deliver the data as quickly as it enters your house or office.
Printer Sharing: Ethernet and Fast Ethernet have more than enough bandwidth to easily transfer print jobs.
File Sharing/Copying: Both Ethernet and Fast Ethernet allow a file to be copied quickly. Ethernet will be slightly slower than a really fast Hard Drive and Fast Ethernet will allow you to transfer a file as quick as your hard drive.
Multiplayer Games: Most network games function well since they are typically designed with modem connections in mind. Some games, however, will take advantage of the network bandwidth and truly push it to the limits, so game performance may be better on an Ethernet or Fast Ethernet network with many graphics intensive games.
© A Plus Electronics, Inc. 2004
4845 Steeds Crossing Circle
Park City, KS 67219 USA