WHAT IS WAN?
It simply means wide area network. The full practical definition is a connection that traverses a public network or commercial carrier. It can also be defined in accordance to book as a Network that covers a large expanse of an area geographically and connecting Local Area Networks (LANs). In this case, the LANs are multiple. Organizations uses this connect their branches with the Head Office. This is a common practice within Banks, where the Head Office will interconnect with its other branches, thus making transactions real time.
WHAT IS THE MAIN COMPONENTS?
For an effective and reliable performance of a WAN, the following components must be available. These are routers, switches and Modems. A further breakdown of these components will bring clear insights into the workings of the WAN.
CUSTOMER PREMISES EQUIPMENTS – CPE: This is either bought out rightly by the subscriber or lease from the provider. It makes use of either copper or cable to connect to connect the CPE to the provider’s nearest exchange or central office. This is known as “local loop” or “last-mile”.
HARDWARE: As earlier mentioned above, the hardware you are required to have for an effective performance of WAN are:
Routers: This is an electronic hardware that connects a Local Area Network (LAN) to Wide Area Network (WAN). The work it does is handling of messages between the two networks.
Switch: This is a network device saddled with the responsibility of selecting a path or circuit through which data will be sent to its desired destination.
Modem: It is a device that enables one computer to communicate with another computer. Modem simply means, Modulator/demodulator. It converts signal from digital to analogue and vice –versa. This is for the purpose of receipt and transmission.
WAN STANDARDS: For an effective and uninterrupted functioning, WAN needs to operate by using OSI model through layer 1 and 2.
ENCAPSULATION: This is so defined as the wrapping of data in a defined protocol header. This is in conjunction with the OSI model as mentioned above. Note that, the effective function ability of the OSI layer, there must be presence of data link layer and physical link layer which are the major parts of OSI model.
In conclusion, the evolution of WAN has afforded many organizations the world over to have offices in remote areas and at the same time have real time access transactions. It is a great innovation indeed.
DATA CIRCUIT-TERMINATING EQUIPMENT/DATA COMMUNICATING EQUIPMENT – DCTE/DCE: These are devices that put data on the local loop, and they are called DTE. On the other hands, DCE basic function is the provision of an interface for the DTE which gives access to communication link on the WAN cloud.