A network is a collection of computers, printers, FAX, and scanners and other devices that are connected together with cables. The sharing of data and resources. Information travels over the cables, allowing network operators to exchange documents & data with each other, print to the same printers, and generally share any hardware or software that is connected to the network. Every computer, printer, or other peripheral device that is connected to the network is called a node. Networks can have tens, thousands, or even millions of nodes.
Cabling: The two utmost popular kinds of network cabling are twisted-pair (also known as 10BaseT) and thin coax (also known as 10Base2). 10BaseT cabling looks like ordinary telephone wire, except that it has 8 wires inside instead of 4. Thin coax looks like the copper coaxial cabling that's often used to link a VCR to a TV set.
Network Adapter: A network computer is linked to the network cabling with a network interface card, (also called a "NIC", "nick", or network adapter).
Local Area Networks(LANs): A network is any assembly of independent computers that communicate with one another over a shared network medium. LANs are networks generally confined to a geographic area, such as a single building or a college campus.
Wide Area Networks(WANs) : Wide area network (WAN) can be as simple as a modem and remote entrée server for employees to dial into, or it can be as complex as hundreds of branch offices globally linked using special routing protocols and filters to minimize the expense of sending data sent over vast distances.
Internet: The Internet is a system of linked networks that are worldwide in scope and facilitate data communication facilities such as remote login, file transfer, electronic mail, the World Wide Web and newsgroups.
Ethernet: Ethernet is the greatestgeneral physical layer LAN technology in use nowadays. Other LAN types include Fast Ethernet,Token Ring, Fiber Circulated Data Interface (FDDI), Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM) and LocalTalk. Ethernet is popular because it strikes a good stabilityamong speed, ease and cost of installation.
Hubs: The last part of the networking puzzle is called a hub. A hub is a container that is used to gather groups of PCs together at a central location with 10BaseT cabling. If you're networking a small group of computers together, you may be able to get by with a hub, some 10BaseT cables, and a handful of network adapters.