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Networking The Complete Reference, Third Edition by Bobbi Sandberg

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CHAPTER

1 What Is a Network?

At its core, a network is simply two (or more) connected computers. Computers can be connected with cables or telephone lines, or they can connect wirelessly with radio waves, fiber-optic lines, or even infrared signals. When computers are able to communicate, they can work together in a variety of ways: by sharing their resources with each other, by distributing the workload of a particular task, or by exchanging messages. Today, the most widely used network is the Internet. This book examines in detail how computers on a network communicate; what functions they perform; and how to go about building, operating, and maintaining them.

The original model for collaborative computing was to have a single large computer ...

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