Networking hardware, also known as network equipment or computer networking devices, are electronic devices which are required for communication and interaction between devices on a computer network. Specifically, they mediate data transmission in a computer network. Units which are the last receiver or generate data are called hosts or data terminal equipment.
Networking devices may include gateways, routers, network bridges, modems, wireless access points, networking cables, line drivers, switches, hubs, and repeaters; and may also include hybrid network devices such as multilayer switches, protocol converters, bridge routers, proxy servers, firewalls, network address translators, multiplexers, network interface controllers, wireless network interface controllers, ISDN terminal adapters and other related hardware.
The most common kind of networking hardware today is a copper-based Ethernet adapter which is a standard inclusion on most modern computer systems. Wireless networking has become increasingly popular, especially for portable and handheld devices.
Other networking hardware used in computers includes data center equipment (such as file servers, database servers and storage areas), network services (such as DNS, DHCP, email, etc.) as well as devices which assure content delivery.
Taking a wider view, mobile phones, tablet computers and devices associated with the internet of things may also be considered networking hardware. As technology advances and IP-based networks are integrated into building infrastructure and household utilities, network hardware will become an ambiguous term owing to the vastly increasing number of network capable endpoints.
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F.A.Q. about Networking
What is network equipment?
Network equipment - devices necessary for the operation of a computer network, for example: a router, switch, hub, patch panel, etc. You can distinguish between active and passive network equipment.
What is an active network equipment?
Active networking equipment is equipment followed by some “smart” feature. That is, a router, switch (switch), etc. are active network equipment.
What is passive network equipment?
Passive network equipment - equipment not endowed with "intellectual" features. For example - cable system: cable (coaxial and twisted pair (UTP/STP)), plug / socket (RG58, RJ45, RJ11, GG45), repeater (repeater), patch panel, hub (hub), balun (balun) for coaxial cables (RG-58), etc. Also, passive equipment can include mounting cabinets and racks, telecommunication cabinets.
What are the main network components?
The main components of the network are workstations, servers, transmission media (cables) and network equipment.
What are workstations?
Workstations are network computers where network users implement application tasks.
What are network servers?
Network servers - hardware and software systems that perform the functions of controlling the distribution of network shared resources. A server can be any computer connected to the network on which the resources used by other devices on the local network are located. As the server hardware, fairly powerful computers are used.