A Local Area Network or LAN is high speed data network that covers a relatively small geographic area such as a building, alaboratory, or a school. It connects workstations, personal computers, servers, and other devices. LAN offer computer users many advantages, including shared access to devices and applications, file exchange between connected users and communication between users via electronic mail and other applications. LANs differ in the way the computers are connected
IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers) is a US publishing and standards organization responsible for many LAN standards such as the 802 series. IEEE 802.3, populary called Ethernet is the most popular LAN. Usually operating at 10 Mbps to 10 Gbps and is present in most large organizations and offices. In a typical lan configuration, one computer is designated as the server. It stores all of the software that controls the network, as wel as the software that can be shared by the computers attached to the network. Computers connected to the server are called workstations.
Two most commonlyused LAN implementations are depicted below
A) Ethernet or IEEE 802.3
B) Token Ring or IEEE802.5