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Network research assignment.

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Introduction A network is basically at least 2 or more computers linked together so they can communicate digitally, or share equipment & email. Our previous sponsor has now decided that she maybe interested in creating a network for her business to hook up with larger publishing businesses. However, she knows little of the technicalities involved and would like them explaining, including my personal opinion and how it can be related to music production. Given the minimal amount of information we have received it was my job to research into the different forms of network, how a network can be comprised, the use of data and transferring it across a network and how the use of networks would effect a 'real time' session, i.e.: a jam over seas with another musician. Weeks Tasks 1 20th - 27th 2 3 4 5 6 Plan Research Draft final Review Submit Main research Firstly what must be understood is that a network comes under two very important categories: LAN and WAN: LAN LAN stands for Local Area Network and this basically covers computer users from in the home to large businesses in a region, a LAN will either be spread within a building or series of buildings, such as within a University or for a small business who's data varies within all areas. A network such as a LAN usually carries information through a series of cables or occasionally through radio waves. The link will enable users to access information across the spectrum of users within the network. Common problems with any kind of network is the spreading of viruses. Because the computers are all joined a virus has the ability to spread across all in one fell swoop, which could potentially destroy the entire system. Another common problem with networks is the amount of Data that can be stored on it which also links with how much data can be transferred around/across it and how it will affect time span from one Computer to another. ...read more.


Ring networks are difficult to install and are quite expensive but do offer a larger and faster Data transfer rate, they can also span over a large area. These kinds of network rely on a system known as Token Ring; in the ring of computers empty information frames travel around the ring. When one computer, for example PC1, wants to send information to another, PC7, it will wait for the ring to provide a free frame. Once an empty frame appears, PC1 will write the destination, PC7, then the message (changing the 0's to 1's and vice-versa) and then who its from. The message will then be sent through each individual PC until the message arrives at PC7, where the message will be copied and changed to 0's again, the frame will then continue around the ring until the empty frame appears at PC1 which notes that the message has been received and deletes the information leaving the frame empty for another user. Star topology - here we have a central computer, known as the Hub, where all information can pass through. Similar to the Ring network, a Computer will wait for an empty frame to send information, however instead of going through all of the PC's the frame meets in the Hub, and this will decide where to send the frame. A common problem with a Star topology is that the Hub can sometimes become bottlenecked due to data overflow, which slows the network down. Star networks also use Token Ring technology. A Star network is relatively simple to install and run. Tree Topology - this is a combination of Star and Bus networks, where a group of Star networks interlink on Bus connections. This provides two relatively simple networks to combine creating a bigger data interface. However similar problems can arise with data transfer, due to the lower level transfer involved in a Bus network, and the bottleneck problem found in Star networks. ...read more.


A Star network would probably be better with regards to ease, but the size of the files being used could lock up the central Hub each time more than one computer wanted to stream a conference or send some audio files at the same time. A better idea would be to possibly create a Tree topology with a Ring system instead of a Star, this way all of the computers would be interconnected without the fear of bottleneck and could be lined out via a Linear/Bus connection to another Ring network. Fibre Optic cables would be the best line of media to use due to its capacity to carry 1Gbps of information, more than enough for an audio file and video streaming, also it can be spread across a great area, so networking from two buildings should be no problem, and internet conferencing should also be no problem, provided that Digital modems are used since they have a faster transfer rate. Conclusion In conclusion the final draft of my Networking Report could have been much better. With regards to research I found many useful definitions for all of the areas covered, such as LAN, WAN, Topology, etc. However I wish that my research into Real Time innovation could have been more in-depth. My lack of complete technical knowledge meant that much of my research time was spend reviewing how networks worked instead of how they could benefit the user. My research on actual networking, however, was more extensive and has a clear approach for those not familiar with networking. Further development would involve a videoed experiment with a home network to see how well a Real Time session would react under different circumstances and topologies and I would also research into different projects and peoples opinions with regard to how other people approached it. I produced my assignment in report format, since this allowed me to almost pin-point the information under headings for each part. This way confusion would not arise with regard to other aspects of the report whilst reading it. ...read more.

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