Sign Up|Login Courses F.a.q Resources



An introduction to networking


The role of switches, routers and firewalls in a network


An e-learning platform purpose-built for networking


An effective approach to learning computer networking


Techniques to master subnetting


A Glossary of Networking Terms

An introduction to networking

A computer network (also referred to as a "data network", or simply a "network") consists to a set of devices connected together in order to be able to exchange data between themselves. These devices create a network using their respective network interfaces. Some devices may use a single network interface, other devices may be connected to the network via multiple interfaces.

The type of interface(s) used by a device to connect to a network depends on the medium being used to connect. A wireless network interface is used to connect to a network over-the-air using a standard such as IEEE 802.11. There are various types of wired mediums in use today, the most common of which follows the IEEE 802.3 standard (Ethernet). Most devices that have a wired network interface will have at least one Ethernet interface.

A device that exists on a computer network may be referred to as a node. Based on the function of a node within the network, we can classify it as one of 2 types of devices:

  • hosts - these are devices that either store data that may be requested by other hosts, or devices that request data from other hosts in order to perform a certain function.