What is a Network?

NetworkA network can be internal to an organization or span the world by connecting itself to the internet. In computer network, network operating system is used that controls and co-ordinates the activities of computers that are connected to the network. The examples of these operating systems are: Windows NT, UNIX, Novell etc.

The large organizations and institutions have their own computer network systems. A computer network provides many advantages. The main advantages are:

1. Communication
The most important feature of computer network is the communication. People can communicate efficiently and easily at very low cost via e-mail, chatting, video telephone, video conferencing, internet telephone, groupware and SMS service etc.

2. Sharing Hardware
In a computer network each computer attached with the network can access the printer, scanner or disk drives etc. For example, if several personal computers and a single laser printer are connected to a network, than each user can access the printer.

3. Sharing Data
In a network environment, and authorized person can access data stored on other computers on the network. For example, on the Internet, a large number of internet users (including mobile users) can access same database.

4. Sharing Software
In a network environment connected users can access same software stored on the network server. These software are multi users software. The software developers sell network version or site license of their software.

5. Electronic Funds Transfers (EFT)
EFT allows users connected to a network to transfer money from one bank account to another via telephone line or other telephone media. For example, some consumers use an ATM to access their bank accounts. They also use credit cards to make purchases from super stores and pay bills online.



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