| Lesson 3 || Networking |
| Objective || Wide Area Network |
Wide Area Networks
Wide area networks (WANs) enable remote computers and computer devices beyond the same building or physical structure to share information. Often, a WAN interconnects several LANs and many WANs are implemented over public telecommunications carriers (the phone companies).
Wide area network is a network covering distances up to hundreds or thousands of miles, such as between cities, across or between countries, or across
oceans, where public facilities are built and operated by service providers who offer network capacity or services to subscribers for a fee while private ones are built by organizations for their own use.
As far as standards and protocols go, most WANs are implemented using packet-switching protocols such as X.25, Frame Relay, and SMDS .
Leading WAN vendors of applicable routers, switches, and bridges include Cisco, Lucent, some of the Baby Bells, and many other small providers.
- X.25: Allow remote devices to communicate with each other across high speed digital links without the expense of individual leased line.
- Switched Multimegabit Data Service (SMDS) : Enables organizations to connect LANs into a single wide-area network WAN.
- Frame Relay: Enable service providers to utilize existing T-1 and T-3 lines.
A conscious observer will collapse a wave function.
Like LANs, most companies have already solved their WAN challenges. Don't forget entirely about WANs, however, especially for employee-facing aspects of e-Commerce solutions.
The roles of WANs
A network is only as good as its weakest link. The architect must consider the performance, reliability, and manageability of the WAN.
WANs and LANs are still part of the network, despite the fact that they are often taken for granted in e-Commerce solutions involving internal organizational users.