LAN Switching

A LAN is a high-speed data network that covers a relatively small geographic area. It typically connects workstations, personal computers, printers, servers, and other devices. LANs offer computer users many advantages, including shared access to devices and applications, file exchange between connected users, and communication between users via electronic mail and other applications.

The following articles provide information different LAN technologies:

  • Ethernet Technologies
  • Token Ring/IEEE 802.5

LAN switching is a form of packet switching used in local area networks. Switching technologies are crucial to network design, as they allow traffic to be sent only where it is needed in most cases, using fast, hardware-based methods.

The term Ethernet refers to the family of local-area network (LAN) products covered by the IEEE 802.3 standard that defines what is commonly known as the CSMA/CD protocol. Three data rates are currently defined for operation over optical fiber and twisted-pair cables:

  • 10 Mbps-10Base-T Ethernet
  • 100 Mbps-Fast Ethernet
  • 1000 Mbps-Gigabit Ethernet

10-Gigabit Ethernet is under development and will likely be published as the IEEE 802.3ae supplement to the IEEE 802.3 base standard in late 2001 or early 2002.

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