Everything You Need To Know About Computer Networking

As a professional working in computer networking, here are 12 basic concepts you typically should know:
  • Switch. A switch is essential to computer networking. …
  • Router. …
  • Wireless access point (WAP) …
  • Bridge. …
  • Internet protocol address. …
  • Dynamic host configuration protocol (DHCP) …
  • Client and server. …
  • Firewall.

Networking basics (2020) | What is a switch, router, gateway, subnet, gateway, firewall & DMZ

Basics of computer networking

Below are several core concepts in computer networking that a networking professional would be required to know:


A local area network (LAN) is a network that connects computing devices in the same relative vicinity. This could be an office building or a residential home where a local network is required for sharing resources. A wide area network, or WAN, is a network that is geographically boundless, and instead relies on DNS protocols and IP addresses.

Clients and servers

A server is simply a large computer that holds services, images, digital video, internet protocols and more things that a client can access. A client is a computing device that reaches out to a server to access information and data. The client can be a home computer, a personal computing device like a tablet, smartphone or laptop, or it can even be an entity like a browser interacting with an API.

DNS lookup & IP addresses

Domain naming system, or DNS, as its commonly known, is a foundational piece of network infrastructure. Thats because the DNS maps the domain name to an IP address. The reason that a domain name takes you to a webpage when you type it into your browser bar is because of DNS lookup retrieving the IP address that goes to the domain name.

An IP address is basically a network address for any device that is accessing the internet. It is mapped to other things, like email addresses, so that you can receive data, like an email for instance. The IP address mapped to a given email tells the internet where to send it to when it performs the function of delivering an email.

IP addresses can either be manually configured to a DNS server or they are received via Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol. Either way, they can be viewed by performing an IPCONFIG /ALL in Windows.


In plain terms, Ethernet is a protocol to LAN. It is a cable composed of necessary components to connect a computing device to a network, like a network interface card (NIC). Its the most popular product for connecting LAN networks and has been the top choice since the 1990s for reliability and ease of use. Ethernet devices can be easily identified by their MAC address. Using address resolution protocol (or ARP), network engineers can map an IP address to a MAC address, which gives each computing device that connects to the Internet a unique identifier.

Default gateway

When your computer interacts with other computing devices that are not on your LAN, it does so by accessing a default gateway. The default gateway is accessible because of a piece of equipment called a router. Routers are important tools that network professionals use daily.

Routers and switches

The purpose of a router is to send traffic to IP subnets, as is the case when they offer a gateway for computing devices to go from LAN to WAN networks. Routers can offer additional features that include security additions, like firewalls, and increased functionality with multi-port switches.

Switches are used to connect computers to a LAN network. These work by switching frames based on MAC address information received. Network administrators are required to be skilled in connecting to both LAN and WAN. Routers and switches are an essential part of doing that.

What is computer networking?

Computer networking is a type of engineering that requires skilled people who study, analyze and resolve issues regarding how computing devices communicate with one another. A network technician is a specialist in computer networking who ensures the successful linkage of computing devices, creating a computer network. Computer networks are comprised of nodes that share information and resources to facilitate telecommunication.

There are several careers in computer networking, including network administrator, network technician and network engineer. Other titles like systems engineer or systems administrator might fall under the category of computing networking. The field is seeing growth due to increased demand for enterprise businesses to become fully digital and more cloud computing opportunities, as well as other factors.

There are several disciplines that a computer networking professional must know. These include computer engineering, computer science, telecommunication and IT. The tools of the trade include switches, routers and knowledge of access points.

Networking considerations

There are three types of deployment that you can use to activate your wireless network. These are:

Cloud-based deployment

Using platform technology to connect devices in the cloud is an emerging way of managing networks. In a cloud-based deployment, a user can access a single cloud instance of the network where all of the devices are supported, powered by the Internet.

Converged deployment

Some small offices and campuses operate on a converged model of deployment. In a converged model of deployment, multiple components, like wireless and wired devices, are connected in the same access switch. The switch then serves as a wireless control for wired devices as well as performing the traditional functions of a switch.

Centralized deployment

Centralized deployment is the most common way to deploy a new network. If the network is in an office building or college, you can use centralized deployment which focuses the network out of a single, central location, consolidating it. Controllers that exist on-site direct the network.


What are the 3 essential networking basics?

Learn Networking Basics
  • Clients and servers—how services such as e-mail and web pages connect using networks.
  • IP addresses—how devices on a network can be found.
  • Network hubs, switches and cables—the hardware building blocks of any network.

What are the 4 types of networking?

File sharing: Networking of computers helps the network users to share data files. Hardware sharing: Users can share devices such as printers, scanners, CD-ROM drives, hard drives etc. Without computer networks, device sharing is not possible.

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