What is a Network Component?

What is a Network Component?

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Updated on Dec 1, 2023 17:56 IST

Before discussing different types of network components, let me ask you a question: What is a network component? I am sure that most people won’t know what these are. So, let’s first try understanding a network component before jumping to its different types.

A network component is a hardware or software piece that plays a specific role in connecting devices and ensuring data flow within a network. For example, routers, switches, access points, and network interface cards. Each component has a distinct function to manage, direct, or facilitate communication among devices.

Table of Content

What is a Network Component?

Network component definition: A network component is a component that is needed to install computer networks that include both physical and software parts.

Switches, cables, hubs, routers, networking operating systems, and other network components are some of the most used. Computer networks come in various shapes and sizes, from basic to complicated. The parts that must be installed for a network largely depend on the kind of network we have selected depending on our needs. Depending on our requirements, we can also remove a few network components. For instance, cables are not required to set up a wireless network; hence, we can remove this network component.

Hardware components and software components are two main categories of computer network components. For you to fully comprehend the network components of the computer, we have explained them in depth in this article.

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Types of network components

For simplicity of explanation and understanding, we have divided or grouped various network components into two categories in this article, such as:

  • Hardware components
  • Software components

To better comprehend each of these categories, let’s now take a closer look at each one. Let us begin with hardware components.

Hardware components

The hardware components are the server, client, peer, transmission media, and connecting devices. Let’s go through each one of them in more detail.

Server

In its simplest form, a server is a piece of hardware or software that provides data to other devices.

The server may use the Internet and a Local Area Network or Wide Area Network to distribute data to other hardware or computers. All network users have access to network resources thanks to servers. Web servers, database servers, file servers, virtual servers, proxy servers, application servers, etc., are a few examples of the numerous types of servers.

“Servers,” in a nutshell, are the parts that are mainly utilized to fulfil requests from other devices.

Client

In its simplest form, clients are computers that ask for and receive service from servers in order to access and share network resources.

The client/server network is the term used to describe how a server and its clients interact on a computer. The client, frequently a computer or a piece of software but sometimes a terminal, exchanges data with the server across a network connection.

“Client,” in a nutshell, is a physical component necessary to communicate with the server.”

Peer

In its simplest form, peers are computers that provide and receive services from others in a workgroup network without centralized control.

No central authority in the group establishes the guidelines for access. Everyone in the group has the same rights. Any type of influence over another member is prohibited.

“Peers,” in a nutshell, are computers in a workgroup network without centralized control that can both supply and receive services from other peers.”

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Transmission media

In its simplest form, transmission media are the channels through which data is transferred from one device to another in a network.

Transmission media, such as coaxial cable, twisted-pair wire, and optical fiber cable, are carriers used to link computers together in a network. A physical or wireless transmission medium are both examples of transmission media. Wireless transmission medium involves the use of unguided media such as infrared waves, electromagnetic, microwaves, etc. Physical transmission medium includes the use of wires and cables such as fiber optic cables, coaxial cables, etc.

“Transmission media,” in a nutshell, are the physical channels that transport data to or from a computer or computer network to an end device, such as a terminal, mobile phone, or printer.”

You can also explore How to Learn Networking from Scratch – Beginner’s Guide.

Connecting device

In its simplest form, connecting devices are the devices that connect computers, printers, fax machines, and other electronic devices to a network.

With the aid of connecting devices, you may efficiently, securely, and precisely move data over one or more networks. Hardware and networking devices are other names for connecting devices. A computer network has many connecting devices, such as hub, repeater, router, switch, bridge, and gateway.

“Connecting device,” in a nutshell, binds the network media together and acts as a middleware between networks or computers.”

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Software components

The operating system and protocol suite make up the software components. Let’s explore each one of them in detail.

Operating systems

In its simplest form, operating systems enable workstations connected by a network to exchange data, programs, printers, etc., and are usually installed on the server.

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To link computers and other devices to a local area network, an operating system has specific features (LAN). The three most popular operating systems are UNIX, Windows, and MS-DOS.

“Operating systems,” in a nutshell, are the program that oversees all of the other application programs in a computer after being loaded into it by a boot program.”

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Protocol suite

In its simplest form, a protocol suite is a set of rules or guidelines that are laid down and followed by each computer for data communication.

Other protocol suites, such as IPX and SPX, were popular before TCP/IP became popular and widely used. OSI Model ( Open System Interconnections) and TCP/IP Model are the two widely used protocol suites nowadays.

“Protocol suite,” in a nutshell, is a collection of protocols that are designed to work together.”

Conclusion

The crucial network elements listed above ensure that the internet connection is steady and keeps its speed. You may design and construct a secure network for your company with the aid of a thorough understanding of network components.

We believe you thoroughly understand the network components, but if you still have questions, please send them our way.

FAQs

What is a network component?

A network component is a component that is needed to install computer networks that include both physical and software parts.

How many types of network components are there?

There are mainly two categories of network components, such, as Hardware and Software components.

What is a hardware network component comprised of?

A hardware network component is comprised of the server, client, peer, transmission media, and connecting devices.

What is a software network component comprised of?

A software network component is comprised of the operating system and protocol suite.

In accordance with the network component, what is a server?

In accordance with the network component, a server is a piece of hardware or software that provides data to other devices. The server may use the Internet and a Local Area Network or Wide Area Network to distribute data to other hardware or computers. All network users have access to network resources thanks to servers. Web servers, database servers, file servers, virtual servers, proxy servers, application servers, etc., are a few examples of the numerous types of servers.

In accordance with the network component, what is a protocol suite?

In accordance with the network component, a protocol suite is a set of rules or guidelines that are laid down and followed by each computer for data communication.

In accordance with the network component, what is a connecting device?

In accordance with the network component, a connecting device is a device that connects computers, printers, fax machines, and other electronic devices to a network.

What is the main function that a network component performs?

The main function that a network component performs is that it connects different devices within a single LAN and also multiple LANs.

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