Network Components

Jason Dion • 200,000+ Students Worldwide
A free video tutorial from Jason Dion • 200,000+ Students Worldwide
CISSP, CEH, Pentest+, CySA+, Sec+, Net+, A+, PRINCE2, ITIL
4.6 instructor rating • 23 courses • 219,691 students

Lecture description

A brief overview of the networks and devices covered by the Network+ exam. An important lecture for us to all being speaking the same "language" during the rest of the course.

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CompTIA Network+ (N10-007) Full Course & Practice Exam

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14:29:51 of on-demand video • Updated June 2020

  • Passing the Network+ certification exam with confidence
  • Understanding computer networks, their functions, and their components
  • Subnetting networks
  • Performing basic network configurations
  • Becoming an effective networking technician in a small-to-medium sized business environment
English -: In the last video we talked about why we use networks. And the whole purpose is to get data from one place to another, from one machine to another. Now whether that's carrying voice, video, or data, it's going to have to get across the network somehow. Now what comprises our networks? Well that's what we're going to answer in this video? We're going to talk about all the different network components, things like clients and servers, hubs, wireless access points, switches, routers, media, and WAN links. Now some of those terms probably look familiar and others may not. So we're going to go through each one of them individually in this lesson. The first one we have is clients. And these are the devices that our end-user is going to access the network with. This can be something like a workstation, a laptop, a tablet, a smartphone, a smart tv, a server, or any other terminal device. Even your wifi enabled thermostat like a Nest, this is considered a client. This can be any device that connects to the network. And we're going to use this big bucket term called client to describe all of them. The next component we have is what's known as a server. Now a server is something that provides resources to the rest of your network. Now if you're at work, you're probably familiar with an email server or a file server right? And there's different servers that provide different functions. You may have a web server or an email server or a file server or a chat server or a print server and all sorts of other different kinds of servers. These can be dedicated hardware or they can be a specialized type of software that the device uses. And that takes it and allows it to act like a server for us. We'll talk more about these as we go through different models. Whether it's going to be a client server model or a peer-to-peer model. But for right now, it just want you to be familiar with the term server. The next component we're going to discuss is called a hub. Now a hub is a piece of old technology that we really don't use in our networks anymore. But we're still going to cover it because the exam covers it. When I was growing up in the industry we used hubs everywhere. Hubs were an easy way for us to connect network devices such as clients and servers and put them together. They can be interconnected to provide even more ports if I needed to by plugging one port of one hub into another port of another hub. And this would create a daisy chain effect. The problem is that this could lead to increased network errors. Basically, when you have a hub, information comes in one port of the hub, and then gets spit out all of the other ports. So if you have a four port hub, one person is talking and it rebroadcasts it out to the other three people. This isn't a big deal when you have a four port hub. But if you have a 48 port hub, now when one person is talking, the other 47 people have to listen to it too. We're going to cover hubs a lot more in depth later on because they're the back bone of networking. And switches, that we're going to talk about and use in our networks today, are actually a second generation version of hubs that combine hubs with another device called a bridge. Now the next component we're going to talk about is a wireless access point. Wireless access points are devices that allow wireless devices to connect into your wired network. So if you're using your laptop or your smartphone right now and you're connecting over wifi, you're actually connecting into a wireless access point. These are commonly used in homes, small businesses, colleges, and even large enterprise networks. Affectively, a wireless access point is a wireless hub. Whatever is broadcast out one way, goes out the other way as well. We're going to talk a lot more about wireless access points when we get to the wireless devices section later on in this course. The next component we have is called a switch. Now a switch is a smarter version of a hub. It connects networks devices such as clients and servers together just like a hub did. But there's a big difference here. Switches can learn which devices are on which ports. So instead of taking it in one port and pushing out the other ports two, three, and four, as we did with a four port hub, a switch will take it in on port one and then send it out only to port two, three, or four. Whichever one it's trying to talk to. And so I like to think about this instead of us being in a room and broadcasting our message to everyone in the class, I take the single person I want to talk to, put them into a closet with me, and then we talk over there. That way we're not disturbing everybody else. Now this is the big benefit of a switch. And we're going to talk a lot more about switches later on when we get into the ethernet fundamental section. Switches are only going to forward traffic received from one port to the destination port. And so we call these smart hubs essentially right? Because they act like hubs but they're a lot smarter. But instead we're going to actually call them switches 'cause that's the right term. These are going to be providing you with more security and more efficient use of bandwidth than a hub did. And this is going to give us a lot better use inside of our networks. The next device we have to cover is called a router. Now a router is used to connect two different networks together. They're going to intelligently make forwarding decisions from one network to the next based on its logical address. Which we refer to as an IP address or internet protocol address. Most modern routers are going to rely on IP. Although there are other routing protocols out there as well. We're going to talk a lot more about routers. In fact, we have an entire section dedicated to routeing. Next we have media. Now media is what we use to connect two devices or a device to a switchboard. These can be things like copper cable, fiber optic cable, or even radio waves if you're using wifi. It doesn't really matter what the media type is. But we have to understand that media is the things that connect everything. If there's a break in the cable or the media, your networks aren't going to work right. Each type of media has its own strengths and weaknesses. And we're going to talk all about those later in the course. For example, copper is very cheap to use. But it can't go very far. Fiber optic, on the other hand, can go really far. But it costs a lot of money. Each one has its own bandwidth limitations, capacity limitations, and distance limitations. Now we're going to get into those specifics later on in the course because you're going to have to memorize each of them. Including down to how many feet they can cover. For example, from talking about a copper cable, how long it can go. Or a fiber optic cable, how long it can go. And we'll talk about that later on when we get into the ethernet section down the road. The last component we need to talk about is a wide area network link or WAN link. Now a WAN link is going to physically connect two networks together are geographically dispersed. So when you look at the internet, it's really just a big series of WAN links. If I go to your house right now and I connect my laptop to your network, and you didn't have a WAN link, we would only be able to talk inside our house. We wouldn't be able to make it to the outside world and go to Facebook or Google or even back to my house. That's what a WAN link allows you to do. Whether you're using a lease line, a DSL line, a cable line, a fiber optic line, a cellular, satellite, microwave, it really doesn't matter. All of those are WAN links. It's your connection to the outside world. And it has to be routed through a router back into your network. This is going to connect your internal network to the external networks. And when we do this, like we take your small office, your home office, and we connect it to the internet, that's exactly what we're doing. So we'll talk more about WAN links later because we have another entire section dedicated to those.