Last Updated on June 15, 2023 by Mayank Dham
In the realm of computer networks, Ethernet stands tall as the backbone of connectivity. Since its inception in the 1970s, Ethernet has evolved into the most widely used and trusted technology for local area networks (LANs) and wide area networks (WANs). Its unparalleled reliability, scalability, and speed have propelled it to become the de facto standard for wired networking, empowering millions of devices and facilitating seamless communication across the globe.
What is Ethernet in Computer Networks?
In computer networks, Ethernet refers to the most common type of Local Area Network (LAN) currently in use. It has grown alongside technological advancements due to its simplicity and ability to support faster speeds with backward compatibility.
Why is Ethernet required?
Ethernet is still a popular type of network connection due to its high speed, security, and dependability.
Ethernet can also be used to connect phone lines and internet access points to wireless routers and internet ports.
Wireless connectivity can be used to connect Internet-connected devices such as televisions, laptop computers, and other electronic devices.
Actual networks are used in various organizations such as company headquarters, academy premises, and hospitals. Ethernet is widely used because of its speed, security, and dependability.
Types of Ethernet Networks
An Ethernet network is typically active within a 10 km radius. Fiber optic cable extension significantly increases the network’s coverage distance. Here are some types of Ethernet networks-
Fast Ethernet :This type of Ethernet protocol is generally supported by a crooked cable or CAT5 cable, which has the implicit capability of transferring or admitting data at around 100 Mbps. They serve at 100Base and 10/100Base, on the fiber side of the link if any device similar to a camera, laptop, or other is connected to a network. Fast Ethernet is divided into three orders: 100BASE- TX, 100BASE- FX, and 100BASE- T4.
Gigabit Ethernet : This network transfers data at a high rate of about 1000 Mbps or 1 Gbps. All of the pairs in the crooked brace string contribute to the data transfer speed in this type of network. This network type is widely used in video conferencing systems that use CAT5e or other advanced lines. Gigabit Ethernet is more common in modern times.
10-Gigabit Ethernet : This is a much faster and more advanced network, with a data transfer rate of 10 Gigabits per second. It employs CAT6a or CAT7 twisted-brace lines, as well as optical fiber lines. This network can be extended to almost any length using fiber optic cables.
Switch Ethernet : A switch or hub can be added to this type of network to improve performance by providing each workstation with a separate 10Mbps connection rather than sharing the medium. It supports 1 Gbps to 10 Gbps for rearmost Ethernet and 10 Mbps to 100 Mbps for fast Ethernet.
Types of Ethernet Cables in Computer Networks
In Ethernet cabling, there are three types of strings. These are –
A coaxial cable has an inner conductor that runs down the center. Conductors are surrounded by an insulation layer, which is then surrounded by another conducting layer, making this type of cabling immune to outside interference. Coaxial cable was originally used in computer networks, but crooked-brace cable has largely replaced it. The common types of coaxial cable include:
- Hard line coaxial cable
- Flexible coaxial cable
- Semi-rigid coaxial cable
- Formable coaxial cable
- Rigid coaxial cable
- Twin axial cable
- Triaxial cable
Twisted- brace cabling
A twisted-brace cable is made up of four pairs of cables. To reduce crosstalk and outside interference, these cables are twisted around each other. This type of cabling is widely used in modern LANs. Telephone and network cabling can both be done with twisted-brace cabling. It comes in two performances:
Unshielded Twisted Brace (UTP) Unshielded twisted pairs (UTPs) are copper wires with a resistance of 100 ohms that are surrounded by an outer jacket. They don’t have a metal shield. The cable has no electrical interference protection and a very small diameter. The twist increases its resistance to electrical noise and EMI.
Shielded Twisted Pair (STP) STP has a copper braid jacket or foil wrapping to help insulate cable signals from interference. STP cables are more expensive than UTP cables, but they provide faster transmission rates over longer distances.
Fiber- Optical Cabling
Glass or acrylic are frequently used for the core and cladding. The index of refraction, which determines how fast light may go through a material and how much it will bend as it passes through it, is the most crucial basic characteristic. The core has a higher refractive index than the cladding. Due to reflection, it prevents light from escaping the fiber and entering the cladding.
Strength members are intended to provide additional support to the cable, preventing optical fiber breaks. In tightly buffered cables, strengthening members are positioned around the buffered optical strand.
For added physical protection, the cable may include an additional layer of metallic shields. Because fiber is not susceptible to EMI, it only provides physical protection.
The outer jacket is made of plastic, comes in a variety of colors, and must meet fire resistance standards.
The coating acts as a barrier, preventing breakage of the core and cladding.
The buffer in a fiber cable is a layer of protection that protects the fiber from external stress. The empty space in the tube is filled with protective material to ensure the strength of the cables.
This cabling type employs optic filaments to transmit data in the form of light signals. Glass beaches are surrounded by cladding material. This cabling type can support longer cable lengths than any other (up to a couple of long hauls). The lines are also protected against electromagnetic interference.
Types of Fiber-Optical Lines
Single-mode Fiber: Single-mode fiber is a type of optical fiber that is frequently used for long-distance transmission. Single-mode fiber has only one transmission mode. When compared to multimode fiber, it has greater bandwidth capabilities.
Multi-mode Fiber: A multi-mode fiber is an optical fiber that can transmit multiple light waves or modes at the same time, each with a slightly different internal reflection angle.
Advantages of Ethernet in Computer Networks.
Ethernet provides much faster speeds than wireless connections. This is possible due to Ethernet’s one-to-one connectivity. As a result, a speed of 10 Gbps or, on rare occasions, 100 Gbps can be achieved with ease.
Effectiveness: Ethernet cable, such as Cat6, consumes less power, which is lower than a WiFi connection. As a result, these Ethernet lines are thought to be the most energy-efficient.
Good data transfer quality: Because it is resistant to noise, the information transferred is of high quality.
Security: When compared to a wireless connection, an Ethernet connection provides a more advanced level of security.
Low cost: We don’t need a high cost to form an ethernet. It is reasonably priced.
Reliability: Ethernet connections are among the most dependable connections due to their lack of radio frequency interruptions. As a result, there is less disposition, less retardation, and no bandwidth deficit.
Disadvantages of Ethernet in Computer Networks
Although Ethernet has numerous benefits, there are some drawbacks to using an Ethernet connection. The following are the disadvantages of Ethernet:-
Expandability: It is generally intended for shorter and lower distances. If you want to expand the network, you’ll have to pay new fees, which are time-consuming in Ethernet.
Crosstalk can occur when long lines are used.
Connections: The number of Ethernet connections is limited. Only one device can be connected if you use a single ethernet connection. Additional lines are required to connect multiple objects.
Mobility: There is limited mobility. Ethernet is ideal for use in situations where the device must sit in specific locations.
If there is an issue with Ethernet, it is difficult to troubleshoot. It is difficult to determine which network cable is causing the problem.
Ethernet has long been a popular method of connecting computers. While the Internet has largely replaced its use, most organizations still rely on Ethernet for security. Data has always existed in some form or another on your devices; we can also say that it has always lived on your devices. As a result, we can say that the world that runs on Ethernet will be correct. Users are aware of the advantages that Ethernet can provide. In addition, significant changes have occurred in this evolving technology in order to meet the increasing demand for data operations and connections.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q1. What is Ethernet in Computer Networks?
Ethernet in computer networks refers to the most common type of Local Area Network (LAN) used for connecting devices within a limited area. It is a reliable, scalable, and high-speed technology that facilitates seamless communication between devices.
Q2. Why is Ethernet required?
Ethernet is required in computer networks due to its high speed, security, and reliability. It enables fast data transmission and ensures a stable connection between devices, making it essential for various applications, such as internet access, file sharing, and real-time communication.
Q3. What are the different types of Ethernet networks?
Ethernet networks come in various types, including:
Fast Ethernet: Supporting data rates up to 100 Mbps.
Gigabit Ethernet: Enabling data rates of 1 Gbps.
10-Gigabit Ethernet: Providing data rates of 10 Gbps.
Switch Ethernet: Utilizing switches or hubs to improve network performance by providing dedicated connections to individual workstations.
Q4. What are the different types of Ethernet cables used in computer networks?
Ethernet networks use a variety of cables, including:
Twisted-pair cables have largely replaced coaxial cabling in computer networks. It is made up of an inner conductor encased in insulation and an outer conducting layer.
Twisted-pair cabling: Cables that are twisted together to reduce crosstalk and external interference. It is divided into two categories: unshielded twisted pairs (UTP) and shielded twisted pairs (STP).
Fiber-optic cabling: This type of cabling uses optical fibers to transmit data as light signals. It has fast data transfer rates and is resistant to electromagnetic interference (EMI).