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What is a network? and what types of networks are there

A network is defined as a group of two or more computer systems linked together. There are many types of computer systems linked together. there are many types of computer networks including

  • Local-Area Network (LANs): The computers are geographically close together ( that is, in the same building).
  • Wide-Area Networks (WANs): the computers are father apart and are connected by telephone lines or radio waves
  • Campus-Area Network (CANs): the computers are withing a limited geographic area, such as a campus or military base
  • Metropolitan-Area Networks (MANs): A data network designed for a town or city.

  • Home-Area Networks (HANs): A network contained within a user's home that connects a person's digital devices.

  • Global Area Network (GAN): a network composed of different interconnected networks that cover an unlimited geographical area.

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What characteristics are used to categorize different types of networks?

  • protocol: the protocol defines a common set of rules and signals that computers on the network use to communicate. E.g. Internet Protocol (IP)
  • topology: The physical and logical arrangements on how different components of a network communicate with each other.
  • architecture: Networks can be broadly classified as using either a peer-to-peer or client/server architecture.
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What are the alternative names of

  • computers on a network
  • computers and devices that allocate resources for a network

Computers on a network are sometimes called nodes. Computers and devices that allocate resources for a network are called servers.

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What are Protocols

The protocol defines a common set of rules and signals that computers on the network use to communicate. E.g. Internet Protocol (IP)

In Computer Communications:

  • Some kind of physical connection is required between communicating parties (e.g. nodes)
  • Both parties need to know the shared protocol

These rules exists also in “Human Communication” and answer to three main questions:

•What/How/When is it communicated?

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What type of Links are there?

Links in the form of physical connections. The transmission media in networks. three main categories with examples. 

Wired

  • Coaxial e.g. TV antennas
  • Twisted Pair Cables
  • Optical Fiber
  • USB cables
  • Power lines

Wireless

  • Bluetooth
  • Wi-Fi

 

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Name the three network topologies, describe them

Bus simple and cheap wiring bottleneck on cable

  • Common transmission media
  • all nodes broadcast signals to all
  • Bidirectional. 

Ring network failure possible due to failure of one station

  • common media, but in a closed loop
  • passes a token
  • unidirectional

Star  , a Switch as a single point of failure

  • hub or switch in the central node
  • pass to stwich
  • centralized management. 

others: point-to-point, mesh, three and hybrid. 

 

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Describe the OSI model

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The Open System interconnection model is a conceptual model for defining and standardizing network communication mechanisms. there are 7 abstract layers. each layer has its distinct functionality. provides an interface for its predecessor and successor. 

Functional details are hidden within the current layer so that the next layer is not required to have knowledge about its predecessor and successor ( other than the standardized interfaces)

Every layer can add its own header to a data package to transfer management information. these headers are only used by the corresponding layer on the other machine

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What is the TCP/IP model

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The TCP/IP Model simplified the classical OSI Model and effectively replaced it. but 

Keep in mind:

•These are not an architecture

•They do not establish which services or protocols to use.

•It suggests what each level should do.

 

  1. Application
    1. Applications, protocols and services that interface with the end user
    2. data is formatted, converted, encrypted decrypted compressed and decompressed and sent or presented to the user
    3. open, close and manage a session between end user application processes
  2. Transport
    1. Facilitates end-to-end communications between multiple applications simultaneously (ports)
    2. reliable and unreliable end-to-end data transport and data stream services (TCP, UDP, SCTP)
    3. Connection-oriented, connectionless communications, and data stream services (session establishment and termination)
  3. Internet
    1. provide host addressing (IP)
    2. choose the best path to the destination network (Routing)
    3. Switch packets out of the correct interface (Forwarding)
    4. Maintain quality of service (QoS)
    5. Connectionless end-to-end networking
  4. Network (Access)
    1. In L2 there are 2 sublayers: logical link control (LLC,802.2) provides services to the upper layers and physical addressing (media access control addresses) 
    2. error checking (CRC)
    3. L1: frames get encoded in sequences of bits, depending on the Links (physical connections) e.g. light pulses, electricity, radio waves..
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What parts of the protocol data unit are covered with what part the OSI & TCP/IP models 

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In layered systems, PDU represents a unit of data specified in the protocol of a given layer, which consists of protocol control information and user data. 

  1. Data is just data
  2. Segments contain Transport header + Data
  3. Packets contain Network Header + transport header + data
  4. Frames contain Frame Header+Network Header+Transport Header+ Data+ Frame Tail
  5. and bits are bits
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What are the devices connected to the OSI & TCP/IP model? 

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 A firewall is a security equipment that uses security rules to control incoming and outgoing network traffic. It can physical or virtual. depending on its layer, it may filter:

  • packets and connections (L4)
  • Application and protocols (L7)

Routers

  • Logic to forward data based on addresses between multiple networks
  • router maintain a routing table (contains directions)
  • A router often knows different paths to a destination and has to choose the best way from a to b
  • are required for wide area networks (WAN) like the internet

Switch

  • Logic to forward data based on addresses in one network or segment of a single network
  • star physical typology

Repeater and Hub

  • No logic, can be seen as a plain extension of the physical wiring
  • A Hub has a Star physical topology BUT BUS logical topology
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What is a circuit switching network? 

Circuit Switching Network: A (physical) connection is  made for a call or similar.

•Line is typically completely occupied by this one  call.

•Benefit: Simple and guaranteed bandwidth for the active call.

•Downsides: Bad network utilization and limited flexibility.

•E.g. Plain old telephone service (POTS)

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What is a packet switching network

Packet Switching: A call / or internet traffic is  transferred in small chunks (packages) which are  handled independently from each other.

•Line can easily be shared between multiple  logical connections and service types.

•Benefits: Better overall network utilization with more flexibility.

•Downside: Additional functionalities are needed to guarantee a decent service quality.

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What is the Internet Protocol?

Internet Protocol (IP): IP is designed explicitly as addressing protocol. It is mostly used with TCP. The IP addresses in packets help in routing them through different nodes in a network until it reaches the destination system. TCP/IP is the most popular protocol connecting the networks.

  • Current version: IPv4
    • 32 Bit Addresses
    • Standardized since 1981
  • Upcoming version: Ipv6
    • 128 Bit Addresses
    • Initially standardized in 1998
  • Standardized protocol that forms together with TCP and UDP the core functionality of the internet.
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What is a 32 BIT IP address?

IPv4
 

4 times 1 Byte separated by a dot, e.g.: 193.135.244.87

•each block can have a value between 0 and 255

•allows for 2³² = 4294967296 combinations/addresses

Some of the combinations are not valid addresses

 

  • Reserved for internal networks (Private Address Spaces):
    • from 10.0.0.0 to 10.255.255.255
    • from 172.16.0.0 to 172.31.255.255
    • from 192.168.0.0 to 192.168.255.255
  • Reserved for the local host / local pc:
    • from 127.0.0.0 to 127.255.255.255
  • Broadcast IP 255.255.255.255
  • Loopback 127.0.0.0 – 127.255.255.255
  • Etc…
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What is a 128 Bit address?

IPv6 
 

8 blocks separated by a colons, e.g.: 2001:0db8:0000:0000:0000:8a2e:0370:7334

•each block have 4 digits.

•each digit can have a value on Base16, between 0 and F. E.g. 0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9, a,b,c,d,e,f

•allows for 2128 combinations/addresses

0 at the beginning of a block may be skipped. E.g. 2001:0db8:0000:0000:0000:8a2e:0370:7334 becomes 2001:db8:0:8d3:0:8a2e:70:7344

Consecutive blocks of zeros may be skipped and replaced by two colons. E.g. 2001:db8:0:0:0:0:1428:57ab becomes 2001:db8::1428:57ab

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What is a DNS?

The Domain Name System (DNS) is the phonebook of the Internet. Humans access information online through domain names, like nytimes.com or espn.com. Web browsers interact through Internet Protocol (IP) addresses. DNS translates domain names to IP addresses so browsers can load Internet resources.

Each device connected to the Internet has a unique IP address which other machines use to find the device. DNS servers eliminate the need for humans to memorize IP addresses such as 192.168.1.1 (in IPv4), or more complex newer alphanumeric IP addresses such as 2400:cb00:2048:1::c629:d7a2 (in IPv6).

 

Also possible: IP to Domain resolution ( ”reverse DNS” )

e.g. 147.86.1.71 à fhnw.ch

 

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What are the internet protocol sites of the OSI & TCP/IP model? 

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What are the seven most commonly used protocols?

  1. Transmission Control Protocol (TCP): TCP is a popular communication protocol which is used for communicating over a network. It divides any message into series of packets that are sent from source to destination and there it gets reassembled at the destination.

  2. User Datagram Protocol (UDP): UDP is a substitute communication protocol to Transmission Control Protocol implemented primarily for creating loss-tolerating and low-latency linking between different applications.

  3. Post Office Protocol (POP): POP3 is designed for receiving incoming E-mails.

  4. Simple Mail Transport Protocol (SMTP): SMTP is designed to send and distribute outgoing E-Mail.

  5. File Transfer Protocol (FTP): FTP allows users to transfer files from one machine to another. Types of files may include program files, multimedia files, text files, and documents, etc.

  6. Hyper Text Transfer Protocol (HTTP): HTTP is designed for transferring a hypertext among two or more systems. HTML tags are used for creating links. These links may be in any form like text or images. HTTP is designed on Client-server principles which allow a client system for establishing a connection with the server machine for making a request. The server acknowledges the request initiated by the client and responds accordingly.

  7. Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS): HTTPS is abbreviated as Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure is a standard protocol to secure the communication among two computers one using the browser and other fetching data from web server. HTTP is used for transferring data between the client browser (request) and the web server (response) in the hypertext format, same in case of HTTPS except that the transferring of data is done in an encrypted format. So it can be said that https thwart hackers from interpretation or modification of data throughout the transfer of packets.