Networking Fundamentals: Local Area Network (LAN)




Before looking in Local Area Network, we must understand what the bases of network are. Networks are simply a group of devices connected by any mean. These connections differ according to the number to the devices in the network, architecture or the area involved in the network. To cater to these requirements, there are various networks, but even with the presence of so many networks Local Area Networks and Wide Area Networks are the most popular and dominant. Most of the networks are the subtypes of these popular networks as they form foundation for all possible networks.

What is Local Area Network (LAN)

If we simply describe LAN, it is the number of computers connected within a ‘local’ area like offices or homes. This local area can vary from one room to a few streets, and a number of buildings. The LANs can transfer data at a very efficient rate, much faster than data can be transferred via telephone line. However, there are a few limitations in using LAN including the limitation of distance and the number of devices connected.

Components of LAN

There are few types of LANs identified on the basis of the differences in topology, protocols, and media. Topology refers to the geometric planning of devices on the network. Protocols can be described as rules and encoding specifications for delivering data. The protocol also includes the determination, if the network is using client/ server or peer-to-peer architecture. Lastly, media refers devices which can be connected via wire, coaxial cables, and twisted-pair wire or fiber optic cables.

Ethernet and Wi-Fi are the two essential approaches to empower LAN associations. Ethernet is a technology that empowers PCs to speak with one another. Wi-Fi utilizes radio waves to associate PCs to the LAN. Other LAN innovations including Token Ring, ARCNET and Fiber Distributed Data Interface have lost support as Ethernet and Wi-Fi speeds have expanded. The ascent of virtualization has filled the advancement of virtual LANs, which permits arrange directors to coherently gather organize hubs and segment their systems without the requirement for real foundation changes.

What is Wireless Local Area Network - WLAN

Wireless systems are generally simple to actualize nowadays, particularly when contrasted with the possibility of steering wires while sending another wired system or upgrading a current one. The initial phase in arranging a remote LAN to settle on your remote system administration innovation standard. Remember, that the standard you have to oblige to on your system passages and switches are the complete accumulation of remote system interface cards (NICs) for your PCs and other system assets.

Requirements of WAN

Only if the PCs that are associated realize that and concur on a typical method for correspondence, and the assets that are to be shared, they can't work in a network. Systems administration programming is similarly as essential as systems administration equipment since it sets up the sensible associations that make the physical associations work. For LAN to operate in best way, it requires assistance of some physical cables or if the connection is wireless it requires Radio frequency or Infrared connections between devices and computers. Then it requires a common set of communication rules known as network protocol. Software downloaded or installed and updated to help the devices for communication and manage them. Other peripheral devices are also required if necessary but are not compulsory.  This equipment helps in connecting each device to all others in the network in the most flexible and detailed way to ease the communication and execution process.

Advantages of LAN Network

Involving a connection of PCs or potentially mobiles laptops, tablets or PCs joined to a server, LAN is such a network that helps organizations, schools and different associations directly in their day to day tasks. Setting up a safe and dependable LAN network benefits the organization and its workers, the clients and colleagues, taking the business forward. Some of the benefits of LAN are given below:

  • Users won’t have to make multiple copies of their work but one document can be shared among all the individual devices easily. For example: a word processor, spreadsheet and so forth can be stacked onto the document and shared by all clients.
  • Client can spare their work halfway on the system's record server. This implies they can recover their work from any workstation on the system.
  • Workstations can share peripheral devices like printers. This is less expensive than purchasing a printer for each workstation.
  • At the point when another adaptation turns out, it just must be stacked onto the server rather than onto each workstation.
  • Clients can speak with one another and exchange information between workstations in all respects effectively.
  • Workstations don't really require their very own CD-ROM drives which make them less expensive to purchase than remain solitary PCs.
  • They don't have to return to a similar workstation constantly.
  • Operating a LAN can make users’ work much easier in the following ways:
  • Quicker, progressively customized administration to clients by means of email, web structures or talk.
  • On location and remote access to all business applications and business information.
  • Simple gathering planning and videoconferencing.
  • Continuous understanding into business execution to help with basic leadership.

There are multiple types of network which provide efficient connection between devices and computers for sharing files or data, or simply executing tasks. These various types of network are made to cater to needs depending on the size, security, architecture and number of devices involved in the network. One of these networks is LAN. It is one of the most popular networks and many of the networks are built on its basis. This network provides efficient communication and internet services to its users.

With the above-mentioned information regarding LAN network, the beginners can have detailed understanding of its basics. However, in the professional world and to specialize in this field further, one must continue to strive for more. The QuickStart’s Cisco Training Courses, provide detailed learning of the network with more knowledge on how to set up, execute and manage the network. The courses include practical and theoretical knowledge making it much more helpful for you to execute your knowledge in this profession.

About The Author
Anas
Netapp Associate Instructor

Anas Ijaz

Anas is an expert in all things Network. He works with Netapp Storage Solutions, AWS Cloud (Managing and Deploying Networks), Microsoft Azure, and Office 365 Administration and Integration. He is a Microsoft Certified IT Professional (MCITP) and is currently preparing for CCNA.