Computers in homes and offices are connected together by local area networks (LANs), located within a building or in a campus environment. LANs link computers, printers, scanners and shared devices such as modems, video conferencing units and facsimile machines to each other and to the internet (Fig. 42.10). A discrete LAN is typically located on the same floor or within the same department of an organisation.

Each device connected to the LAN can communicate with every other device. The connections between devices may be any of the following : twisted pair, coaxial cable, fibre optics or wireless media. For the most part, devices are connected to a LAN by twisted pair cabling that is similar to but sometimes of a higher quality ...

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