Defining a network infrastructure:–
A network can be defined as the grouping of hardware devices and software components which are necessary to connect devices within the organization, and to connect the organization to other organizations and the Internet.
1. Typical hardware components utilized in a network environment are network interface cards,computers,hub,switches,printers,cabling and phone lines.
2. Typical software components utilized in a networking environment are the network services and protocols needed to enable devices to communicate.
Only after the hardware is installed and configured, can operating systems and software be installed into the network infrastructure. The operating systems which you install on your computers are considered the main software components within the network infrastructure. This is due to the operating system containing network communication protocols that enable network communication to occur. The operating system also typically includes applications and services that implement security for network communication.
Another concept, namely network infrastructure, is also commonly used to refer to the grouping of physical hardware and logical components which are needed to provide a number of features for the network, including these common features are:
2. Routing and switching capabilities.
3. Network security.
4. Access control.
The network or network infrastructure has to exist before a number of servers needed to support applications which are needed by your users can be deployed into your networking environment.
1. File and print servers.
2. Web and messaging servers.
3. Database servers.
4. Application servers.
When you plan your network infrastructure, a number of key elements need to be clarified or determined.
1. Determine which physical hardware components are needed for the network infrastructure which you want to implement.
2. Determine the software components needed for the network infrastructure.
3. Determine the following important factors for your hardware and software components:
* Specific location of these components.
* How the components are to be installed.
* How the components are to be configured.
When you implement a network infrastructure, you need to perform a number of activities that can be broadly grouped as follows:
* Determine the hardware and software components needed.
* Purchase, assemble and install the hardware components.
* Install and configure the operating systems, applications and all other software.
The physical infrastructure of the network refers to the physical design of the network together with the hardware components. The physical design of the network is also called the network’s topology. When you plan the physical infrastructure of the network, you are usually limited in your hardware component selection by the logical infrastructure of the network
The logical infrastructure of the network is made up of all the software components required to enable connectivity between devices, and to provide network security. The network’s logical infrastructure consists of the following:
- Software products
- Networking protocols/services.
It is therefore the network’s logical infrastructure that makes it possible for computers to communicate using the routes defined in the physical network topology.
The logical components of the network topology define a number of important elements:
- Speed of the network.
- Type of switching that occurs.
- Media which will be utilized.
- Type of connections which can be formed.