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Technology is continually advancing in this modern world and almost every day, new technologies are innovated and released out of the market. Advancement of technology is visible in the field of computer networking. If Local Area Network was the only invention yesterday, it has already progressed to a higher version which is the Wide Area Network. To bridge the two types of network, one of the newest technologies today is MAN - Metropolitan Area Network.
The Metropolitan Area Network is designed to connect networks in a metropolitan area, city, campus, community, etc. It is wider than the Local Area Network which can only be used in one building, floor or wide room. But, it is not as big as the Wide Area Network which goes beyond one area or city to another location. The coverage of Metropolitan area network in terms of geography is between LAN and WAN.
MAN can cover several blocks and buildings depending on the communication channels of an area. It can reach from 5 to 50 kilometers in one area. The MAN may be used to connect several LAN in order to create a big network. That is why it is often used in business establishment that has several branches near each other. Universities and large campus also use the Metropolitan Area Network nowadays.
To connect several Local Area Networks, MAN uses backbone line usually made up of fiber optic. Fiber optic runs in subway tunnels in order to connect the networks in an area using MAN. The advantage of using fiber optic is it can be replaceable with other types of fiber with higher quality. Fiber will be replaced once in a while as needed or there is need to upgrade to another advance type of network in the future.
Some Metropolitan Area Network owners use infrared or radio laser links. It is because using cables may be expensive especially that it has to cover a couple of kilometers to link networks. The maximum distance that MAN can handle is 50 kilometers and a fiber optic cable this long will be very expensive to install. Those organizations or campuses using MAN with just few distances in between networks can use the cables.
Using MAN is an advantage because it has high speed network access. It serves several protocols such as IEEE 802.6 Distributed Queue Dual Bus Defined (DQDB), IEEE 802.16 Broadband Wireless MAN Standard (WIMAX), Asynchronous Transfer Mode Protocol (ATM) and many more. Among all protocols, the standard one used in MAN is the DQDB where it allows up to 30 kilometer distance between networks with speed of 34-155 Megabytes per second.
Many companies, campuses and local governments are slowly switching to MAN - Metropolitan Area Network. This is because of the advantages that MAN offers and the convenience it brings to clients. Having small networks compounded into a large network such as in MAN provides security for the communication shared in between the networks.
April 16, 2014, 10:58:55 am, America/Chicago