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what are Network Topologies and how it works in Computer Networks?

Network Topologies and how it works in Computer Networks?

Today we will see, network topology. Upon the completion of this session, we will be able to understand, various network topologies like bus, star, ring, mesh, and hybrid.

  • We will also understand what are the advantages
  • and disadvantages of bus, star, ring, mesh, and hybrid topologies.
  • Firstly, we will start with what is a network topology.
  • We have some nodes and we have to arrange these nodes so that we can establish communication among all the nodes.

Topology: means the arrangement of nodes of a computer network. Say I have to arrange all these nodes so that I can establish communication among all the nodes. Topology can be viewed as a Layout of a computer network. Topology can be viewed as a physical topology and logical topology.

Physical topology: means where I am going to place all these nodes. This is what is Physical topology. Say I can place all these three nodes on the ground floor of my building, I can also take these two nodes to the first floor of my building. And the placement of these nodes is called physical topology.

Logical topology: means how the data is going to flow from this node to this node. This node may be on the ground floor, this node may be on the first floor. How am I going to deal with the data flow in the network-- that is viewed as the logical topology. Simply, topology means the arrangement of nodes in such a way that we have to make communication among all the nodes.

Why is Network Topology Important?

Networking is an essential skill; it’s the key to success. So why are so many of our connections superficial and transactional? And why do they get us nowhere in our personal or professional life? Maybe because we’ve lost sight of the fact that it’s not about the number of connections you make, but the quality of the relationships you build and nurture.

In the full Video Seminar Janine Garner explores 4 questions:

  • Why Is Networking Important?
  • Why do we need to think about networking differently?
  • Who are the key people that we need to network with for personal growth & success?
  • What are some key networking mastery tips?

Types of Network Topology

  1. Bus Topology
  2. Ring Topology
  3. Star Topology
  4. Tree Topology
  5. Mesh Topology
  6. Hybrid Topology

1) Bus Topology

In local area networks where bus topology is used, each node is connected to a single cable, with the help of interface connectors. This central cable is the backbone of the network and is known as the bus.

A signal from the source travels in both directions to all machines connected on the bus cable until it finds the intended recipient. If the machine address does not match the intended address for the data, the machine ignores the data. Alternatively, if the data matches the machine address, the data is accepted.

Because the bus topology consists of only one wire, it is rather inexpensive to implement when compared to other topologies. However, the low cost of implementing the technology is offset by the high cost of managing the network. Additionally, because only one cable is utilized, it can be the single point of failure.

2) Ring Topology

A ring topology is a bus topology in a closed loop. Data travels around the ring in one direction. When one node sends data to another, the data passes through each intermediate node on the ring until it reaches its destination.

The intermediate nodes repeat (retransmit) the data to keep the signal strong. Every node is a peer; there is no hierarchical relationship between clients and servers. If one node is unable to retransmit data, it severs communication between the nodes before and after it in the bus.

3) Star Topology

Star networks are one of the most common computer network topologies. In its simplest form, a star network consists of one central node, typically a switch or hub, which acts as a conduit to transmit messages. In star topology, every node (computer workstation or any other peripheral) is connected to a central node. The switch is the server and the peripherals are the clients.

A star network is an implementation of a Spoke–hub distribution paradigm in computer networks. Thus, the hub and leaf nodes, and the transmission lines between them, form a graph with the topology of a star.

Data on a star network passes through the hub, switch, or concentrator before continuing to its destination. The hub, switch, or concentrator manages and controls all functions of the network. It also acts as a repeater for the data flow. This configuration is common with twisted pair cable and optical fiber cable.

However, it can also be used with a coaxial cable.

The star topology reduces the damage caused by line failure by connecting all of the systems to a central node. When applied to a bus-based network, this central hub rebroadcasts all transmissions received from any peripheral node to all peripheral nodes on the network, sometimes including the originating node.

All peripheral nodes may thus communicate with all others by transmitting to, and receiving from, the central node only. The failure of a transmission line linking any peripheral node to the central node will result in the isolation of that peripheral node from all others, but the rest of the systems will be unaffected.


  • If one node or its connection breaks it doesn’t affect the other computers and their connections.
  • Devices can be added or removed without disturbing the network


  • An expensive network layout to install because of the number of cables needed.
  • The central hub is a single point of failure for the network.

4) Tree Topology

A tree topology is a special type of structure where many connected elements are arranged like the branches of a tree.

It is also known as Hierarchical Topology

This topology divides the network into multiple levels/layers of the network.A tree topology combines characteristics of linear bus and star topologies. Tree topologies are all for the expansion of the existing network.

Advantages of tree topology:

  • Scalable as leaf nodes can accommodate more nodes in the hierarchical chain.
  • A point to point wiring to the central hub at each intermediate node of a tree topology represents a node in the bus topology
  • Other hierarchical networks are not affected if one of them gets damaged
  • Easier maintenance and fault finding

Disadvantages of tree topology:

  • Huge cabling is needed
  • A lot of maintenance is needed
  • backbone forms the point of failure.

5) Mesh Topology

Mesh networks keep us connected. Watch to learn what a mesh network is and how it works.

A mesh network, sometimes called mesh network topology, is a network that connects a group of devices to each other. Devices, also referred to as nodes, are connected in a way that some, if not all nodes, have multiple paths to other nodes. In a full mesh topology, every single node is directly connected to each other.

Mesh networks are useful since they create multiple routes for information to travel between users. This functions as a fail-safe if one node loses connection. The decision of which nodes are connected depends on various factors like traffic patterns and the likeliness of connection failure.

6) Hybrid Topology

Hybrid topology is an integration of two or more different topologies to form a resultant topology that has many advantages (as well as disadvantages) of all the constituent basic topologies rather than having characteristics of one specific topology.

Which Topology Is Best for Your Network?

In a Star Network, the best advantage is when there is a failure in interface then a solitary PC could get affected and not the entire association. Star topography is used to work with the probabilities of association frustration by interacting all of the structures to a central center point.

What Tools Help Manage and Monitor Networks?

Now that more companies than ever before are reliant on digital tools to ensure business productivity and efficiency, no one can afford to struggle with a network problem. When connections don’t work as they should, organizations need a quick and effective way to examine the availability and performance of their technology.

Network performance monitoring tools are solutions intended to offer real-time, historical, and even predictive views into the performance of a network, and the application traffic running through it.

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