10BaseT - An Ethernet standard that uses twisted wire pairs.
100BaseTX - IEEE physical layer specification for 100 Mbps over two pairs of
Category 5 UTP or STP wire.
Bridge - A device that interconnects different networks together.
CAT 5 - ANSI/EIA (American National Standards Institute/Electronic
Industries Association) Standard 568 is one of several standards that specify
“categories” (the singular is commonly referred to as “CAT”) of twisted pair
cabling systems (wires, junctions, and connectors) in terms of the data rates
that they can sustain. CAT 5 cable has a maximum throughput of 100 Mbps and
is usually utilized for 100BaseTX networks.
CSMA/CD (Carrier Sense Multiple Access/Collision Detection) - The LAN
access method used in Ethernet. When a device wants to gain access to the network,
it checks to see if the network is quiet (senses the carrier). If it is not, it
waits a random amount of time before retrying. If the network is quiet and two
devices access the line at exactly the same time, their signals collide. When the
collision is detected, they both back off and each wait a random amount of time
Default Gateway - The router used to forward all traffic that is not addressed
to a station within the local subnet.
DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol) - A protocol that lets network
administrators centrally manage and automate the assignment of Internet
Protocol (IP) addresses in an organization's network. Using the Internet's set of
protocol (TCP/IP), each machine that can connect to the Internet needs a
unique IP address. When an organization sets up its computer users with a connection
to the Internet, an IP address must be assigned to each machine.
Without DHCP, the IP address must be entered manually at each computer and,
if computers move to another location in another part of the network, a new IP
address must be entered. DHCP lets a network administrator supervise and distribute
IP addresses from a central point and automatically sends a new IP
address when a computer is plugged into a different place in the network.
DHCP uses the concept of a “lease” or amount of time that a given IP address
will be valid for a computer. The lease time can vary depending on how long a user is likely to require the Internet connection at a particular location. It’s especially
useful in education and other environments where users change frequently.
Using very short leases, DHCP can dynamically reconfigure networks
in which there are more computers than there are available IP addresses.
DHCP supports static addresses for computers containing Web servers that
need a permanent IP address.
DNS - The Domain Name System (DNS) is the way that Internet domain
names are located and translated into Internet Protocol (IP) addresses. A
domain name is a meaningful and easy-to-remember “handle” for an Internet
Driver - A workstation or server software module that provides an interface
between a network interface card and the upper-layer protocol software running
in the computer; it is designed for a specific NIC, and is installed during the
initial installation of a network-compatible client or server operating system.
Dynamic IP Address - An IP address that is automatically assigned to a client
station in a TCP/IP network, typically by a DHCP server. Network devices that
serve multiple users, such as servers and printers, are usually assigned static IP
Encryption - A security method that applies a specific algorithm to data in
order to alter the data's appearance and prevent other devices from reading the
Ethernet - IEEE standard network protocol that specifies how data is placed
on and retrieved from a common transmission medium. Has a transfer rate of
10 Mbps. Forms the underlying transport vehicle used by several upper-level
protocols, including TCP/IP and XNS.
Fast Ethernet - A 100 Mbps technology based on the 10Base-T Ethernet
CSMA/CD network access method.
Firmware - Programming that is inserted into programmable read-only memory,
thus becoming a permanent part of a computing device.
HomePlug™ Powerline Alliance - A nonprofit organization established to
provide a forum for the creation of specifications for home powerline networking
products and services.
Hot Swap - The ability to replace a card or other hardware part in a hardware
device without turning it off or losing functionality.
IEEE - The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. The IEEE
describes itself as “the world’s largest technical professional society—promoting
the development and application of electrotechnology and allied sciences
for the benefit of humanity, the advancement of the profession, and the wellbeing
of our members.”
The IEEE fosters the development of standards that often become national and
international standards. The organization publishes a number of journals, has
many local chapters, and has several large societies in special areas, such as the
IEEE Computer Society.
IP Address - In the most widely installed level of the Internet Protocol
(Internet Protocol) today, an IP address is a 32-binary digit number that identifies
each sender or receiver of information that is sent in packets across the
Internet. When you request an HTML page or send e-mail, the Internet
Protocol part of TCP/IP includes your IP address in the message (actually, in
each of the packets if more than one is required) and sends it to the IP address
that is obtained by looking up the domain name in the Uniform Resource
Locator you requested or in the e-mail address you're sending a note to. At the
other end, the recipient can see the IP address of the Web page requester or the
e-mail sender and can respond by sending another message using the IP address
IPCONFIG - A utility that provides for querying, defining and managing IP
addresses within a network. A commonly used utility, under Windows NT and
2000, for configuring networks with static IP addresses.
ISP - An ISP (Internet service provider) is a company that provides individuals
and companies access to the Internet and other related services such as website
building and virtual hosting.
LAN - A local area network (LAN) is a group of computers and associated
devices that share a common communications line and typically share the
resources of a single processor or server within a small geographic area (for
example, within an office building).
MAC Address - The MAC (Media Access Control) address is a unique number
assigned by the manufacturer to any Ethernet networking device, such as a
network adapter, that allows the network to identify it at the hardware level.
Network - A system that transmits any combination of voice, video and/or data
Network Mask - also known as the “Subnet Mask.”
Plug-and-Play - The ability of a computer system to configure expansion
boards and other devices automatically without requiring the user to turn off
the system during installation.
PowerPacket™ - The basis for the HomePlug™ Powerline Alliance 1.0 specification, PowerPacket is a robust, secure, and reliable means of transferring
data. This technology reduces interference generated by appliances, electronic
devices, and halogen lights. PowerPacket also has encryption techniques built
into the hardware to prevent neighbors on the same power grids from gaining
access to sensitive data or the Internet connection.
Powerline Networking - Data transmission over powerlines.
RJ-45 - A connector similar to a telephone connector that holds up to eight
wires, used for connecting Ethernet devices.
Router - Protocol-dependent device that connects subnetworks together.
Routers are useful in breaking down a very large network into smaller subnetworks;
they introduce longer delays and typically have much lower throughput
rates than bridges.
Static IP Address - A permanent IP address that is assigned to a node in a
STP (Shielded Twisted Pair) - Telephone wire that is wrapped in a metal sheath
to eliminate external interference.
Subnet Mask - The method used for splitting IP networks into a series of subgroups,
or subnets. The mask is a binary pattern that is matched up with the IP
address to turn part of the host ID address field into a field for subnets.
TCP (Transmission Control Protocol) - A method (protocol) used along with
the Internet Protocol (Internet Protocol) to send data in the form of message
units between computers over the Internet. While IP takes care of handling the
actual delivery of the data, TCP takes care of keeping track of the individual
units of data (called packets) that a message is divided into for efficient routing
through the Internet.
TCP/IP - Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) is the
basic communication language or protocol of the Internet. It can also be used
as a communications protocol in a private network (either an intranet or an
extranet). When you are set up with direct access to the Internet, your computer
is provided with a copy of the TCP/IP program just as every other computer
that you may send messages to or get information from also has a copy of
UDP (User Datagram Protocol) - A communications method (protocol) that
offers a limited amount of service when messages are exchanged between computers
in a network that uses the Internet Protocol (IP). UDP is an alternative
to the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) and, together with IP, is sometimes
referred to as UDP/IP. Like the Transmission Control Protocol, UDP uses the
Internet Protocol to actually get a data unit (called a datagram) from one computer
to another. Unlike TCP, however, UDP does not provide the service of
dividing a message into packets (datagrams) and reassembling it at the other
end. Specifically, UDP doesn't provide sequencing of the packets that the data
arrives in. This means that the application program that uses UDP must be able
to make sure that the entire message has arrived and is in the right order.
Network applications that want to save processing time because they have very
small data units to exchange (and therefore very little message reassembling to
do) may prefer UDP to TCP.
USB (Universal Serial Bus) - A “plug-and-play” interface between a computer
and add-on devices (such as audio players, joysticks, keyboards, telephones,
scanners, and printers). With USB, a new device can be added to your
computer without having to add an adapter card or even having to turn the computer
off. The USB peripheral bus standard was developed by Compaq, IBM,
DEC, Intel, Microsoft, NEC, and Northern Telecom and the technology is
available without charge for all computer and device vendors.
USB supports a data speed of 12 megabits per second. This speed will accommodate
a wide range of devices, including MPEG video devices, data gloves,
and digitizers. It is anticipated that USB will easily accommodate plug-in telephones
that use Integrated Services Digital Network and digital private branch
Since October, 1996, the Windows operating systems have been equipped with
USB driver or special software designed to work with specific I/O device types.
USB is integrated into Windows 98. Today, most new computers and peripheral
devices are equipped with USB. A different “plug-and-play” standard, FireWire/IEEE 1394, is designed to support
much higher data rates and devices such as video camcorders and digital
video disk (digital versatile disk) players. Both standards are expected to exist
together, serving different device types.
UTP - Unshielded twisted pair is the most common kind of copper telephone
wiring. Twisted pair is the ordinary copper wire that connects home and many
business computers to the telephone company. To reduce crosstalk or electromagnetic
induction between pairs of wires, two insulated copper wires are
twisted around each other. Each signal on twisted pair requires both wires.
Since some telephone sets or desktop locations require multiple connections,
twisted pair is sometimes installed in two or more pairs, all within a single
WINIPCFG - Configuration utility based on the Win32 API for querying,
defining, and managing IP addresses within a network. A commonly used utility,
under Windows 95, 98, and Millennium, for configuring networks with
static IP addresses.