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At first glance a network sounds pretty simple in today's terms. It consists of two or more computers that are linked in order to share resources, exchange files, or allow electronic communications. The computers on a network may be linked through cables, telephone lines, radio waves, satellites, or infrared light beams. The two basic types of networks include: Local Area Network (LAN) and Wide Area Network (WAN) with the internet being the world's largest WAN.
This looks pretty simple, right? To the first order it is "pretty simple" but only on the surface where the ubiquitous user interfaces reside. The complexities lie underneath the surface and are the heart, brains, and even the soul of the network. Understanding the complexities and what comprises a network as well as network operation from the top down is what the Digital Signage Network Expert (DSNE) program is all about.
Like snowflakes, no two networks are alike. So for the sake of discussion, it helps to classify them by some general characteristics. A given network can be characterized by its size in terms of the geography be it a LAN or WAN. It is further characterized by hardware and the types of physical links and hardware that connect the network. The rules of communication called protocols must be considered (for example, TCP/IP, NetBEUI, or AppleTalk) and of course security and access is critical in terms of who can access the network and how access is controlled.
In the DSNE network fundamentals are established including LANs and WANs as well as network topology and basic layout and design so that everyone is on the same page of the proverbial hymnal. It progresses with a discussion of the different modes in which networks can be connected and explores both wired and wireless technologies and security along with the Pros and Cons of each approach.
After taking a look at the hardware building blocks of a network and understanding the role of each piece in the "puzzle" the DSNE covers network communications. The terminology may be foreign to some but the network experts as well as those who want to become experts need to know the importance and impact of network protocols, bandwidth and transfer rates, as well as understanding ports, and what really impacts speed and limiting the transfer of information flow via port and bandwidth throttling.
Attendees are now prepared to look at advanced network infrastructure, followed by the all import topic of security threats and protection. This is accompanied by good security principles for new networks. The DSNE warps it up with an explanation and tutorial on understanding user myopia that can really be and often is the weak link in the chain. Upon completion of the course and the exam, you become DSNE certified and ready to tackle more complex network problems. Remember, you do not have to know all the answers just know where to go for them when you run out of knowledge or experience in a certain area. In networks you will never know it all and it is a constant learning process starting with the DSNE as the foundation.
Here is quote by an executive of a multi-billion dollar company providing network hardware and software. He opines, "A good rule of thumb is that only 30 percent of your technology spending should go to hardware and software, and the rest should go to training and support. Without training, you and your staff will waste substantial time and money." Words to the wise and you can start with the DSNE.
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This white paper is for informational purposes only and is subject to change without notice. C2G makes no guarantees, either expressed or implied, concerning the accuracy, completeness or reliability of the information found in this document.