Local Area Networking
This article defines computer networking and gives a simple explanation of how data is transmitted on a network. It explains the benefits of networking computers and their advantages and disadvantages.
Part 1: Networking Intro
Networking is a means of connecting computers together so that they can share resources, such as files and peripherals (printers, modems, CD-ROM drives, etc.) and services.
Networking involves using both hardware and software.
File and Secondary Storage
Besides the convenience of making information easier to share, the advantages are chiefly economic and administrative.
Transmission of Data
Data is transmitted across the network in the form of bits and bytes translated into electrical signals (each bit being on or off, or positive or negative).
Before being transmitted, bytes are arranged into segments for transmission over a network. Each segment of data is attached to a header and a trailer.
The header and trailer are referred to as a frame and the entire package, frame and data, is called a packet.
Packets are transmitted (as bits and bytes) separately over the network.
At the receiving end, the headers and trailers are removed and the data from all the packets is reassembled into contiguous data.
On a PC, the process of breaking data down into packets and then
reassembling them is carried out by the firmware on the network
Bruce Miller, 2002