A network is a group of devices (nodes) connected by a communication link. A node can be a computer, a printer, or any other device capable of sending or receiving data generated by other devices on the network.
Topology refers to how computer networks connected. Each topology is suitable for a specific task and has its advantages and disadvantages. The selection of topology depends on the type of application, the number of devices used, the required data transfer rate, response time, and cost. In this article we discuss what is topology and its types?
Network topology in computer networks describes a method for mapping all elements in a network. The topology term refers to the physical and logical layout of the system.
The term network topology is used to explain how a network is physically connected. The purpose is to exchange data such as text, audio/video, and images from one point to another point.
Physical or Logical Arrangement of Networks
- Physical Network
The physical network topology refers to how the network is connected (wires, cables, etc.). Setup, maintenance, and configuration tasks require in-depth knowledge of the physical system.
- Logical Network
A logical network topology is a high-level concept of how to build a network, including which nodes are connected and in what way and how data is transmitted over the network. The logical network topology includes any virtual and cloud resources.
Devices on the network are called “nodes.” The most common nodes are computers and peripherals. Illustrate the network topology by showing these nodes and their connections using cables. There are many different types of network topology, including point-to-point, bus, star, ring, mesh, tree, and hybrid.
A network topology map is a diagram that allows an administrator to view the physical layout of the connected devices. Understanding the network topology design is beneficial for learning how devices are interconnected and the best methods for troubleshooting.
Why Is Network Topology Important?
Your network layout is essential for several reasons. Most importantly, it plays a vital role in network functions as well as system functions. Choosing the right topology for your company’s operating model can improve performance while making it easier to locate faults, eliminate errors, and allocate resources more efficiently across the network to ensure optimal network health. A simplified and well-managed network topology can increase energy and data efficiency, which can help to reduce operating and maintenance costs.
After an in-depth definition of network topology, this article will study the main types of network topology, their advantages and disadvantages, and considerations to determine which is best for your business. I will also discuss the uses and benefits of network topology mapping software such as SolarWinds Network Topology Mapper in configuring the network, visualizing how devices are connected, and troubleshooting network issues.
Types of Network Topology
1. Point-to-Point Topology
2. Bus Topology
3. Star Topology
4. Ring Topology
5. Mesh Topology
6. Tree Topology
7. Hybrid Topology
These types of network topology are described briefly in the next posts.