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What are PAN, LAN, MAN, and WAN Networks?

What is PAN, LAN, MAN, and WAN Networks?

Networks can be classified based on size, complexity, level of security, or geographical range. We will discuss some of the most popular topologies based on the geographical spread. That's are PAN, LAN, MAN, and WAN Networks.

What Is PAN Networks?

PAN is the abbreviation for Personal Area Network. PAN is the interrelation between a device to the limit of a person's private space, usually within a 10-meter range. If you have transferred pictures or songs from your laptop to mobile using Bluetooth or from mobile to your friend's mobile, you have used a personal area network.

A person can connect their laptop, smartphone, personal digital assistant, and portable printer to a network at home. This network may be entirely WI-FI or a combination of wired and wireless.

What is LAN Network? 

A LAN local area network is a wired network that is spread over a single site, such as an office building or manufacturing unit. LAN is established when team members need to share software and hardware resources with each other, but not with the outside world. Typical software resources include official documentation user manuals, employee handbooks, etc.

Hardware resources that can be easily shared over the network include a printer, fax machine, modem, memory space, etc. This severely degrades the organization's infrastructure. A LAN can be established using a wired or wireless connection. A LAN that is completely wireless is called a wireless LAN.

What is MAN Network?

MAN is the acronym for Metropolitan Area Network. It is a data network. designed for a town or city. It connects an area larger than LAN, but smaller than a WAN.

Its main purpose is to share hardware and software resources by the various users. The cable TV network is an example of a metropolitan area network. The computers are a MAN that is connected using co-axial cables or fiber optic cables.

What is WAN Network?

WAN is a geographically-dispersed collection of LANs. A WAN like the Internet is the most spread in the world. A network device called a router connects LANs to the WAN.

Like the Internet, most WANs are not owned by any single organization but exist under collective or distributed ownership and management. WANs use technology such as ATM, frame relay, and X.25 for connectivity.

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