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 What is network?

A computer network is a group of computer systems and other computing hardware devices
that are linked together through communication channels to facilitate communication and
resource-sharing among a wide range of users.

 What is networking?
Computer networking, is the practice of transporting and exchanging data
between nodes over a shared medium in an information system.

 Some network component or connecting device:

1. Router –

When we talk about computer network components, the other device that used to
connect a LAN with an internet connection is called Router. When you have two
distinct networks (LANs) or want to share a single internet connection to multiple
computers, we use a Router. In most cases, recent routers also include a switch which
in other words can be used as a switch. You don’t need to buy both switch and router,
particularly if you are installing small business and home networks. There are two
types of Router: wired and wireless. The choice depends on your physical office/home
setting, speed and cost.

2. Bridge-

If a router connects two different types of networks, then a bridge connects two
subnetworks as a part of the same network. You can think of two different labs or two
different floors connected by a bridge.
3. Repeater-

A repeater is an electronic device that amplifies the signal it receives. In other terms,
you can think of repeater as a device which receives a signal and retransmits it at a
higher level or higher power so that the signal can cover longer distances.

4. Hub –

Hub is a device that splits a network connection into multiple computers. It is like a
distribution center. When a computer requests information from a network or a
specific computer, it sends the request to the hub through a cable. The hub will
receive the request and transmit it to the entire network. Each computer in the
network should then figure out whether the broadcast data is for them or not.

5. Switch –
Switch is a telecommunication device grouped as one of computer network
components. Switch is like a Hub but built in with advanced features. It uses physical
device addresses in each incoming messages so that it can deliver the message to the
right destination or port.
Unlike a hub, switch doesn't broadcast the received message to entire network, rather
before sending it checks to which system or port should the message be sent. In other
words, switch connects the source and destination directly which increases the speed
of the network. Both switch and hub have common features: Multiple RJ-45 ports,
power supply and connection lights.

6. LAN Cable –

A local area Network cable is also known as data cable or Ethernet cable which is a
wired cable used to connect a device to the internet or to other devices like other
computer, printers, etc.

 Reference Model in computer network:

Reference Model offers a means of standardization which is acceptable worldwide. Since
people using the computer network are located over a wide physical range and their
network devices might have heterogeneous architecture. In order to provide
communication among heterogeneous devices, we need a standardized model i.e. a
reference model, which would provide us way how these devices can communicate
regardless their architecture.

We have two reference models such as OSI model and TCP/IP reference model, however,
the OSI model is a hypothetical one but the TCP/IP is absolutely practical model.

1. OSI Model
 OSI stands for Open System Interconnection is a reference model that describes
how information from a software application in one computer moves through a
physical medium to the software application in another computer.

 OSI consists of seven layers, and each layer performs a particular network function.

 OSI model was developed by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO)
in 1984, and it is now considered as an architectural model for the inter-computer

 OSI model divides the whole task into seven smaller and manageable tasks. Each
layer is assigned a particular task.

 Each layer is self-contained, so that task assigned to each layer can be performed

 Characteristics of OSI Model:

 The OSI model is divided into two layers: upper layers and lower layers.

 The upper layer of the OSI model mainly deals with the application related issues, and
they are implemented only in the software. The application layer is closest to the end
user. Both the end user and the application layer interact with the software
applications. An upper layer refers to the layer just above another layer.
 The lower layer of the OSI model deals with the data transport issues. The data link
layer and the physical layer are implemented in hardware and software. The physical
layer is the lowest layer of the OSI model and is closest to the physical medium. The
physical layer is mainly responsible for placing the information on the physical

 Functions of the OSI Layers

2. TCP/IP model
 The TCP/IP model was developed prior to the OSI model.

 The TCP/IP model is not exactly similar to the OSI model.

 The TCP/IP model consists of five layers: the application layer, transport layer,
network layer, data link layer and physical layer.

 The first four layers provide physical standards, network interface, internetworking,
and transport functions that correspond to the first four layers of the OSI model and
these four layers are represented in TCP/IP model by a single layer called the
application layer.

 TCP/IP is a hierarchical protocol made up of interactive modules, and each of them

provides specific functionality.

Here, hierarchical means that each upper-layer protocol is supported by two or more lower-
level protocols.

 Functions of TCP/IP layers:

 What is protocol?
A protocol is a set of rules that govern data communications. It represents an agreement
between the communicating devices.
 Some network protocols:
 HTTP- The Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) is an application protocol for
distributed, collaborative, hypermedia information systems. HTTP is the
foundation of data communication for the World Wide Web,
where hypertext documents include hyperlinks to other resources that the user can
easily access, for example by a mouse click or by tapping the screen in a web
browser. HTTP was developed to facilitate hypertext and the World Wide Web.

 FTP- The File Transfer Protocol (FTP) is a standard network protocol used for
the transfer of computer files between a client and server on a computer
network. FTP is built on a client-server model architecture using separate control
and data connections between the client and the server.

 TCP- The Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) is one of the main protocols of
the Internet protocol suite. It originated in the initial network implementation in
which it complemented the Internet Protocol (IP). Therefore, the entire suite is
commonly referred to as TCP/IP. TCP provides reliable, ordered, and error-
checked delivery of a stream of octets (bytes) between applications running on
hosts communicating via an IP network. Major internet applications such as
the World Wide Web, email, remote administration, and file transfer rely on TCP.
Applications that do not require reliable data stream service may use the User
Datagram Protocol (UDP), which provides a connectionless datagram service that
emphasizes reduced latency over reliability.

 IP- The Internet Protocol (IP) is the principal communications protocol in

the Internet protocol suite for relaying datagrams across network boundaries.
Its routing function enables internetworking, and essentially establishes
the Internet.
IP has the task of delivering packets from the source host to the destination host
solely based on the IP addresses in the packet headers. For this purpose, IP defines
packet structures that encapsulate the data to be delivered. It also defines
addressing methods that are used to label the datagram with source and destination
 SMTP- The Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP) is used for two primary
functions. It is used to transfer email from source to destination between mail
servers and it is used to transfer email from end users to a mail system.
 UDP- UDP uses a simple connectionless communication model with a minimum
of protocol mechanism. UDP provides checksums for data integrity, and port
numbers for addressing different functions at the source and destination of the
datagram. It has no handshaking dialogues, and thus exposes the user's program to
any unreliability of the underlying network; there is no guarantee of delivery,
ordering, or duplicate protection. If error-correction facilities are needed at the
network interface level, an application may use Transmission Control
Protocol (TCP) or Stream Control Transmission Protocol (SCTP) which are
designed for this purpose.
UDP is suitable for purposes where error checking and correction are either not
necessary or are performed in the application; UDP avoids the overhead of such
processing in the protocol stack. Time-sensitive applications often use UDP
because dropping packets is preferable to waiting for packets delayed due
to retransmission, which may not be an option in a real-time system.

 POP3- The Post Office Protocol version 3 (POP3) is one of the two main
protocols used to retrieve mail from the internet. It is very simple as it allows the
client to retrieve complete content from the server mail box and deletes contents
from the server.
 ICMP-The Internet Control Message Protocol (ICMP) is a
supporting protocol in the Internet protocol suite. It is used by network devices,
including routers, to send error messages and operational information indicating,
for example, that a requested service is not available or that a host or router could
not be reached. ICMP differs from transport protocols such as TCP and UDP in
that it is not typically used to exchange data between systems, nor is it regularly
employed by end-user network applications (with the exception of some
diagnostic tools like ping and traceroute).
 IGMP- The Internet Group Management Protocol (IGMP) is
a communications protocol used by hosts and adjacent routers on IPv4
networks to establish multicast group memberships. IGMP is an integral part of IP
IGMP can be used for one-to-many networking applications such as
online streaming video and gaming, and allows more efficient use of resources
when supporting these types of applications.
IGMP is used on IPv4 networks. Multicast management on IPv6 networks is
handled by Multicast Listener Discovery (MLD) which is a part of ICMPv6 in
contrast to IGMP's bare IP encapsulation.