Computer network is the interconnection of computing devices, in which nodes have the ability to share resources with each other. The resources are shared through some medium such as coaxial cable, twisted pair cable, Wi-Fi, and fibre optic cable.
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Based on size, structure and distance there are mainly three types of computer networks LAN, MAN, and WAN.
LAN (Local Area Network)
LAN (Local Area Network) is a privately-owned network which covers a small geographical area, such as office, homes, inside a building and a group of buildings. Through LAN, the connected computers can share their resources such as printers, data, and application software. As the network is relatively small, so all the devices are usually connected to the central hub or switch. But nowadays usually in LANs, the devices are connected through wireless technologies. LAN usually facilitate with the data rate of 4 to 16 Mbps. LAN has further two types which are known as ARCNET (Attached Resource Computer NETwork) and Ethernet.
MAN (Metropolitan Area Network)
MAN (Metropolitan Area Network) is a type of network larger than LAN. It relatively covers a single city which has a variety of networks. MAN can also be used to connect different LAN networks and share resources between them. The coverage area of MAN is usually of about 100 km. It is based on DQDB (Distributed Queue Dual Bus), which is IEEE 802.6 standard. DQDB consist of two busses (unidirectional cables) upon which all the computers connect to each other and share resources. One of the examples of MAN is a cable TV network.
WAN (Wide Area Network)
WAN (Wide Area Network), as the name suggests, is a type of network with a coverage of large area than MAN. It is also considered as the network of networks because it connects quite a large amount of networks whether it is on the other side of a building or in another country. The connection with the WAN network is usually made through a public network. It also has a slow transfer of information or communication. WAN has further two types known as Global WAN, and Enterprise WAN. One of the common examples of WAN is the internet.