Networking & Wireless forum

General discussion

request for definitions of elements of networking

by dougwylie / March 4, 2009 8:47 PM PST

I could really do with a clear set of definitions of...
- Router
- Switch
- Bridge
- Gateway
- Subnet
- Subnet Mask

It would be great if anybody is prepared to provide any help.

Cheers,
Doug.

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be sure to google that.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 4, 2009 9:05 PM PST

But let me comment on "router." This one has changed in definition over the years. My first router back in 1990 did exactly what the name implied. Today, 2009 the "router" is that consumer piece of gear that comes with wifi, router with NAT, switched hub and more.

Without nailing down the year you want to define this in and a context the exact definition can be fluid.
Bob

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I sure googled it
by dougwylie / March 4, 2009 9:26 PM PST

Thanks for your reply Bob.

It was actually the fact that the definition of router *is* so dynamic, that caused me to post in a forum rather than Google.

There's various different conflicting factual sets of "definitions" out there so I wanted an expert opinion not a set of conflicting facts (as you get bogged down with if you use Google to compile a glossary - which I'm doing).

The year I want to define this in is 2009, and the context is that I'm putting together a generic glossary (hoping to encompass definitions in the consumer, enterprise, industry, etc contexts).

Does anyone know of any good networking glossary sites...?

Doug.

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Then you have it nailed.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 4, 2009 9:43 PM PST
In reply to: I sure googled it

I've had to go with the flow about what a router is. If I were to take my 1970's networking (yes we had networks back then) I would not be able to talk to today's owners as I would be constantly correcting them that a Linksys Wifi router is not a "router" but has many networking components inside that enclosure.

You've found the right 2009 definition and I think you should go with that and finish your definitions today.
Bob

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