4 Types of Networks


A network is a group of devices connected to each other for resource sharing, information sharing, and communication.

There are many types of networks categorized by their size and purpose. For example, a Personal Area Network (PAN) is the smallest type of network that is used by individuals.


A LAN, or local area network, connects computers and devices in a small geographic area. Typically used at home, schools, offices and in research labs, LANs share resources, such as hardware, software, and data.

LANs can use a variety of communication transmission media, including Ethernet cables (thin cable, thick cable, and twisted pair), fiber, and wireless transmission. They can also use different network topologies, such as bus, star, and ring.

The simplest LAN design is the bus topology, which only uses one cable for connectivity. This design is widely used, and it’s considered to be the simplest, most efficient way to implement a network.

A LAN can also be client/server-based, meaning that the server manages file storage, application access, device access, and network traffic. Users can access databases, email, document sharing, printing, and other services through applications on the LAN server. Most midsize to large business, government, and research networks are client/server-based LANs.


MAN stands for Metropolitan Area Network and it is a network that connects multiple LANs to form a larger network. This type of network covers a larger area than a LAN but is smaller than a WAN.

Usually, this type of network is used in towns and cities to transfer data at high speed. Using fiber-optic communication, transmission speeds can reach 1000 Mbps quickly.

It can also be connected to a WAN network for higher data efficiency and security. It is also less expensive than a WAN.

This type of network uses telecommunications systems to connect computers in a way that makes it possible for organizations to share resources and increase productivity.

MANs typically use optical fiber and routers and switches. Unlike LANs, they can be more difficult to manage and require more technical staff.


A WAN, or wide area network, is a type of computer network that connects computers and other devices across an entire region or country. It is much larger than a LAN, and is used by businesses to communicate and share information with their customers, employees, or other stakeholders.

A large WAN network may use multiple connecting media, including MPLS lines, fiber optic cables, cellular connectivity, and satellite links. Each connection media carries data packets in a WAN mesh architecture to and from various LAN components.

In a WAN environment, end devices like PCs and mobile phones are connected via routers and modems that act as the WAN hub. Other essential architectural components of a WAN are CPE, access points, and switches.


A network is a set of connected computers and other devices that are linked together to communicate or share resources. The connections can be wired or wireless through the use of cables, satellites, radio waves, telephone lines, and infrared light beams.

A NAN network 100 may include at least one NAN device 104, at least one NAN seeker device 108 and at least one NAN advertiser device 110 that are configured to receive or transmit content, data or signals as part of a service. In some embodiments, a NAN proxy device 106 may establish a service on behalf of the NAN devices 104, NAN seeker device 108 and/or NAN advertiser device 110.

The NAN proxy device 106 may communicate with the NAN devices 104, NAN seekers 108 and/or NAN advertisers 110 over wireless links such as 120 for various purposes. For example, the NAN proxy device 106 may perform setup operations for a service on behalf of the NAN seeker devices 108 and/or NAN advertisers 110 such as establishing a subscription that enables reception of content at the NAN seeker device from other NAN devices 104 as part of the service.

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