The Internet is extremely essential for most of all human beings today, due to the different activities that can be managed through it. From there, a term is used that is used in computing to designate the connection of nodes , known as “ network ”.
Although there are several types of networks today, there is no doubt that the wireless network or WiFi technology has arrived to stay in everyone’s life . In addition, thanks to the practicality it is, it is estimated that it has replaced the ethernet type connections, that is, the traditional internet system via cables.
To know a little more about this system, in this post, we will refer to its definition, its functions, the types that exist, which are the necessary components to create one and also the most used and efficient topologies that there are of wireless network .
What is a wireless network and what is it for in computing?
With regard to such a network, it can be said that it is the one that offers the possibility of connecting various nodes without using a physical connection , such as cables. Therefore, it does so by establishing communication through electromagnetic waves.
For its part, in terms of the functions that this system has in computer science, the most notable of these is that it allows establishing links between computers and some other computer equipment without the prior requirement of installing a wiring in the site . Therefore, it means greater comfort for users and more economy in reference to infrastructure.
The wireless network provides greater simplicity so that you can interconnect a remarkable number of devices , be they mobile phones, computers, tablets, printers, faxes, etc. In addition to this, it works perfectly to perform a more elegant installation , ensuring that both the style and appearance of the place are not harmed at all.
Among other functions and / or advantages, we highlight that it serves to allow greater mobility to its users , since they can access the Internet from any site without complications. It also allows access to the network quickly and simultaneously.
However, in terms of security, it can cause problems if there is no efficient protection to prevent the entry of hackers and intruders that may affect you. In addition, it also stands out that the internet speed provided by this type of network and compared to the ethernet, is lower because of possible interference in space.
What types of wireless networks exist without wires?
For starters, it should be noted that networks of this class can be classified in different ways, either by frequency or according to their coverage . Given that the most common is to identify them by the scope that these networks reach, in this post we indicate the types of wireless networks that are depending on the coverage they show :
The acronym for “ Wireless Personal Area Network ” that stands out for allowing wireless communications for particular devices. That is, it is based on offering a purely personal coverage, so it is the type of least scope of the list. Taking into account that it only provides a path of approximately 10 meters.
For its part, it aims to communicate devices such as computers, laptops, smartphones, tablets, PDAs, etc. This, from its peripherals such as keyboard, mouse, controls, among others. Taking into account that, mainly, makes use of technologies such as bluetooth and infrared . Without a doubt, the best of these two is bluetooth because it includes the ability to transmit data between 1 and 100 meters .
With respect to the previous one, this type of technology has a greater reach and basically, it facilitates the connection of portable devices, tablets, etc. Which, makes use of a radiofrequency technology and with it, allows users greater mobility in order to reduce cable connections. Therefore, it is a very flexible wireless data communication system.
It is valuable to highlight that WLANs (Wireless Local Area Network) have taken great power in different fields; as, for example, for manufacturing and warehouses , that is, in establishments where the information needs to be transmitted in real time to a central terminal.
These networks that mean “ Wireless Metropolitan Area Network ” are a system designed to be used in areas of cities or towns, especially; from there, his name. They also allow interoperability with remarkable coverage and bandwidth . That is to say, they have a greater geographical reach than WAN networks, but they are smaller in terms of coverage.
For their part, the WMAN have an excellent particularity in terms of speed, since they are considered connections of very high speed using fiber optic cable or similar. Thus, they can have a much lower error and latency rate than other networks. It should be noted that they are recommended to install surveillance systems with video cameras and are also perfect for having internet in areas without a signal .
The “ Wireless Wide Area Network ” stand out as the type of wireless network with the widest range of all. That way, mobile phones are connected to a WWAN network, today. Taking into account that, it can be composed of certain technologies, such as GSM, GPRS, UMTS .
Now, in reference to its main features, we highlight that WWAN wireless has three characteristics of great relevance and are: They have a truly high internet access speed and thanks to that, they offer the ability to stream video and audio in real time . Additionally, they have multimedia capacity and high quality voice transmission (similar to that of fixed networks).
Components of a Wireless Network What do you need to create one?
In order to understand what a wireless network is and how it can be created, it is necessary to know how to configure this type of network . Which is provided by a series of elements that we will detail below:
An antenna is a device that facilitates broadcasting or has the ability to receive radio waves . In this way, what it does is convert the digital signals or the wave guided by the transmission line into electromagnetic waves that can be sent through free space.
Thus, its specific characteristics will depend on the use that will be given to them and on their relationship between the wavelength of the transmitted or received signal and its dimensions also .
Now, three types of WiFi antennas are distinguished and classified into:
- Omnidirectional : They are responsible for orienting the signal in all directions with a wide beam, but with a short range. Theoretically, they send the data at 360 °.
- Directional : They simply direct the signal in a very specific direction with a narrow beam that emits long range.
- Sectorial : They are those that mix the omnidirectional with the directional antennas, because they send a beam less broad than those of the first type, but wider than the directional ones. Which are measured by DBI or Isotropic Decibel.
Also known as “ Access Point “, it is a layer 2 device that interconnects wireless communication devices to form such a network. Thanks to these devices, Wireless stations can be quickly integrated into any wiring network. Apart from that, allow data to be transmitted by both means .
In addition, it should be noted that this access point has an assigned IP address , with which it can be easily configured.
Like the antennas, the access point comprises three types and are:
- Repeater mode : Used to extend the signal further.
- Root mode : It is one in which multiple users enter the access point simultaneously.
- Bridge Mode : The most useful for connecting two separate buildings without wires. That is, when making a wireless bridge between devices, two access points in this mode will only communicate with each other.
In general, it is designed to join two or more networks located in different buildings . Since, it has the ability to interconnect two network segments by making data packets based on the physical destination address located.
In addition to this, the wireless bridge provides high data rates and allows you to connect places that are difficult to wire. Such as: corporate facilities, school campuses, non-contiguous floors, among others.
The bridge classes that are distinguished are:
- Remote : They are linked in pairs when connecting two or more local networks and can be linked through a Wireless Distribution System (WDS).
- Local : They are ideal for connecting two physically close networks directly.
It is used in networks as a guide in order to orient the connection of wireless networks properly and also direct the data packets, so that flows to the correct destination .
As for the communication technology with which it has, it is based on radio waves and allows ADSL connection, through which it allows the management of broadband internet and can also be distributed to other computers.
Basically, they are capacity expansion cards that are used to transmit and receive data without the need to use cables in WLAN networks, specifically. Therefore, they have an antenna that allows an optimal reception of data from the network .
It should be noted that adapters are schematized for certain types of wireless network standards. For this reason, they have a maximum transmission speed according to the standard, which is expressed in bps .
Wireless network topologies What are the most used and efficient ?
In reference to the topologies of WiFi networks , it should be noted that these can be built with or without an AP access point and through it, it is possible to determine if it is a AD-HOC or an Infrastructure . That is why these types are the most used today:
This is a group of computers that communicate directly with the radio signals without using an access point, that is, there is no central element .
Regarding its main characteristics, we highlight:
- AD-HOC mode can support around 256 users .
- A WLAN with AD-HOC topology requires the configuration of all the equipment connected to it and this must be with the same basic service identifier .
- With respect to the process it performs, it is the following: When a Wireless adapter is activated, it first goes to a “ listen ” status that lasts 6 seconds to search through all channels for an enabled conversion and if it locates one, it tells the user which one to connect to. Otherwise, that is, you cannot connect to another HOST that is active, it is responsible for creating the conversion to join other teams to it.
With the infrastructure topology , if there is a coordination element or access point ; unlike the AD-HOC mode. In the event that this base station is connected to a wired ethernet network, wireless users can access the fixed network through this wireless network mode.
Among its peculiarities we refer to:
- This mode is known as “ Basic Services Set ” or “ Master and Client “, it is IEEE 802.22 networks specifically.
- If you want to link many access points and wireless clients, you need to configure all of them with the same SSID .