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Chapter 7. Networking and Internetworking

Chapter 7. Networking and Internetworking

A network is the interconnection of two or more computers, facilitating the exchange of information between them. Networks aren't just for large companies; you can network two computers in your home to share a single Internet connection, share a printer, more easily exchange files, or even play a networked game. Networking, whether it's between two computers in the same room or two computers on opposite ends of the Earth, can open a host of possibilities not feasible on a standalone system.

There are several different kinds of networks, each with their own limitations and advantages. A simple workgroup can comprise as few as two computers connected with a single cable (often called a peer-to-peer network). This is ideal in a home office or small business setting, where individual systems can be linked together with a minimum of hardware and cabling and configured to share resources. A shared folder, for example, is merely a standard folder residing on a single computer, made accessible to any other computer on the network through Explorer as though it were actually on each computer's hard disk.


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