Please Whitelist This Site?

I know everyone hates ads. But please understand that I am providing premium content for free that takes hundreds of hours of time to research and write. I don't want to go to a pay-only model like some sites, but when more and more people block ads, I end up working for free. And I have a family to support, just like you. :)

If you like The TCP/IP Guide, please consider the download version. It's priced very economically and you can read all of it in a convenient format without ads.

If you want to use this site for free, I'd be grateful if you could add the site to the whitelist for Adblock. To do so, just open the Adblock menu and select "Disable on tcpipguide.com". Or go to the Tools menu and select "Adblock Plus Preferences...". Then click "Add Filter..." at the bottom, and add this string: "@@||tcpipguide.com^$document". Then just click OK.

Thanks for your understanding!

Sincerely, Charles Kozierok
Author and Publisher, The TCP/IP Guide


NOTE: Using software to mass-download the site degrades the server and is prohibited.
If you want to read The TCP/IP Guide offline, please consider licensing it. Thank you.

The Book is Here... and Now On Sale!

The whole site in one document for easy reference!
The TCP/IP Guide

Custom Search






Table Of Contents  The TCP/IP Guide
 9  Networking Fundamentals
      9  Introduction to Networking

Previous Topic/Section
What Is Networking?
Previous Page
Pages in Current Topic/Section
1
Next Page
The Disadvantages (Costs) of Networking
Next Topic/Section

The Advantages (Benefits) of Networking

You have undoubtedly heard the “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts”. This phrase describes networking very well, and explains why it has become so popular. A network isn't just a bunch of computers with wires running between them. Properly implemented, a network is a system that provides its users with unique capabilities, above and beyond what the individual machines and their software applications can provide.

Most of the benefits of networking can be divided into two generic categories: connectivity and sharing. Networks allow computers, and hence their users, to be connected together. They also allow for the easy sharing of information and resources, and cooperation between the devices in other ways. Since modern business depends so much on the intelligent flow and management of information, this tells you a lot about why networking is so valuable.

Here, in no particular order, are some of the specific advantages generally associated with networking:

  • Connectivity and Communication: Networks connect computers and the users of those computers. Individuals within a building or work group can be connected into local area networks (LANs); LANs in distant locations can be interconnected into larger wide area networks (WANs). Once connected, it is possible for network users to communicate with each other using technologies such as electronic mail. This makes the transmission of business (or non-business) information easier, more efficient and less expensive than it would be without the network.

  • Data Sharing: One of the most important uses of networking is to allow the sharing of data. Before networking was common, an accounting employee who wanted to prepare a report for her manager would have to produce it on his PC, put it on a floppy disk, and then walk it over to the manager, who would transfer the data to her PC's hard disk. (This sort of “shoe-based network” was sometimes sarcastically called a “sneakernet”.)

    True networking allows thousands of employees to share data much more easily and quickly than this. More so, it makes possible applications that rely on the ability of many people to access and share the same data, such as databases, group software development, and much more.
    Intranets and extranets can be used to distribute corporate information between sites and to business partners.

  • Hardware Sharing: Networks facilitate the sharing of hardware devices. For example, instead of giving each of 10 employees in a department an expensive color printer (or resorting to the “sneakernet” again), one printer can be placed on the network for everyone to share.

  • Internet Access: The Internet is itself an enormous network, so whenever you access the Internet, you are using a network. The significance of the Internet on modern society is hard to exaggerate, especially for those of us in technical fields.

  • Internet Access Sharing: Small computer networks allow multiple users to share a single Internet connection. Special hardware devices allow the bandwidth of the connection to be easily allocated to various individuals as they need it, and permit an organization to purchase one high-speed connection instead of many slower ones.

  • Data Security and Management: In a business environment, a network allows the administrators to much better manage the company's critical data. Instead of having this data spread over dozens or even hundreds of small computers in a haphazard fashion as their users create it, data can be centralized on shared servers. This makes it easy for everyone to find the data, makes it possible for the administrators to ensure that the data is regularly backed up, and also allows for the implementation of security measures to control who can read or change various pieces of critical information.

  • Performance Enhancement and Balancing: Under some circumstances, a network can be used to enhance the overall performance of some applications by distributing the computation tasks to various computers on the network.

  • Entertainment: Networks facilitate many types of games and entertainment. The Internet itself offers many sources of entertainment, of course. In addition, many multi-player games exist that operate over a local area network. Many home networks are set up for this reason, and gaming across wide area networks (including the Internet) has also become quite popular. Of course, if you are running a business and have easily-amused employees, you might insist that this is really a disadvantage of networking and not an advantage!

Key Concept: At a high level, networks are advantageous because they allow computers and people to be connected together, so they can share resources. Some of the specific benefits of networking include communication, data sharing, Internet access, data security and management, application performance enhancement, and entertainment.


Well, if that list isn't enough to convince you that networking is worthwhile, then… I have no idea what it is you do with your computers! J At any rate, it's quite possible that only some of the above items will match your particular circumstances, but at least one will definitely apply to almost every situation, assuming you own or manage more than one computer.


Previous Topic/Section
What Is Networking?
Previous Page
Pages in Current Topic/Section
1
Next Page
The Disadvantages (Costs) of Networking
Next Topic/Section

If you find The TCP/IP Guide useful, please consider making a small Paypal donation to help the site, using one of the buttons below. You can also donate a custom amount using the far right button (not less than $1 please, or PayPal gets most/all of your money!) In lieu of a larger donation, you may wish to consider purchasing a download license of The TCP/IP Guide. Thanks for your support!
Donate $2
Donate $5
Donate $10
Donate $20
Donate $30
Donate: $



Home - Table Of Contents - Contact Us

The TCP/IP Guide (http://www.TCPIPGuide.com)
Version 3.0 - Version Date: September 20, 2005

Copyright 2001-2005 Charles M. Kozierok. All Rights Reserved.
Not responsible for any loss resulting from the use of this site.