Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Network Operating System

Network Operating System (OS)

In order for computers to be able to communicate with each other, they must first have the networking software that tells them how to do so. Without the software, the system will function simply as a “standalone,” unable to utilize any of the resources on the network.

Network operating software may by installed by the factory, eliminating the need for you to purchase it, (for example AppleTalk), or you may install it yourself.

The computer shown here may be a workstation or a personal computer (PC).

Network Interface Card (NIC)

In addition to network operating software, each network device must also have a network interface card. These cards today are also referred to as adapters, as in “Ethernet adapter card” or “Token Ring adapter card.”

The NIC card amplifies electronic signals which are generally very weak within the computer system itself. The NIC is also responsible for packaging data for transmission, and for controlling access to the network cable. When the data is packaged properly, and the timing is right, the NIC will push the data stream onto the cable.

The NIC also provides the physical connection between the computer and the transmission cable (also called “media”). This connection is made through the connector port. Examples of transmission media are Ethernet, Token Ring, and FDDI.


In order to have a network, you must have at least two devices that communicate with each other. In this simple model, it is a computer and a printer. The printer also has an NIC installed (for example, an HP Jet Direct card), which in turn is plugged into a wiring hub. The computer system is also plugged into the hub, which facilitates communication between the two devices.
Additional components (such as a server, a few more PCs, and a scanner) may be connected to the hub. With this connection, all network components would have access to all other network components.

The benefit of building this network is that by sharing resources a company can afford higher quality components. For example, instead of providing an inkjet printer for every PC, a company may purchase a laser printer (which is faster, higher capacity, and higher quality than the inkjet) to attach to a network. Then, all computers on that network have access to the higher quality printer. Network Operating System.

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