Topography & Topology

Oh how I’ve missed doing blog posts. There is just something about finally understanding a concept; you just want to share it with the world.


We already went over networking but let’s take it a step further into topologies and internetworking. Don’t worry as always I will break it down for you.

Network Topology

When I hear the word topology it reminds me of Social Studies (that’s what they used to call Geography back in the day). Geographic topography refers to how the surface of an area land looks. Does it have hills and mountains or is it flat like a plain? Are there rivers, valleys, or cliffs? Topography is similar to network topology—no, I did not totally veer off I’m getting somewhtaboo-riverere—they both describe how objects are structured, laid out, or placed.

There are many different kinds of network topologies: bus, star, ring, hybrids, etc. Topologies are the physical layout of a computer network. The bus topology refers to computers that are connected together by a single cable called a trunk or backbone. The star topology consists of a hub or switch; all the computers are individually connected to this central connection point. A ring topology has computers connected to two other computers in order to form a ring. A hybrid is simply a combination of two or more topologies.

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Bridges, routers, brouters, and gateways are all devices used in internetworking. Internetworking is a process that connect different networks using transitional devices. Internetworks allow communication amongst networks. An example of an internetwork is the Internet.

The Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) model is a reference model that shows how applications communicate over a network.

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The physical layer deals with bit-level transmission, the data link layer detects errors in the transmitted data, the network layer sets up a logical path so two sites can communicate, the session layer is where connections are established, managed, or torn down, the presentation layer is the data translator (it takes care of syntax and semantics), and the application layer ensures effective communication.

Bridges operated at the physical and data link layers. Routers operate at the network layer. Gateways operate at the session, presentation, and application layers.

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