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4 posts

Wannabe Geek

#60734 1-May-2010 16:40
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I am drafting a list of Network+ Lan technology types and their properties according to the CompTIA Net+ 2009 objectives.

Anyone got a moment and make suggestions on improving this?
The properties I would like to compare are CSMA/CD, Broadcast, Collision, Bonding, Speed and Distance.

Any thoughts?

Categorize LAN technology types and properties



•         10Base-T

–        10 represents maximum throughput: 10 Mbps

–        Base indicates baseband transmission

–        T stands for twisted pair

–        Two pairs of wires: transmit and receive

•         Full-duplex transmission

–        Follows 5-4-3 rule of networking

•         Five network segments

•         Four repeating devices

•         Three populated segments maximum


-          100 represents maximum throughput: 100 Mbps

-          Base indicates base band transmission

-          T stands for twisted pair

X was a place holder they used when developing the standard that just stuck – it doesn’t mean anything.

-          Maximum segment length is 100M

-          Physical media is CAT5 (CAT5e) or higher UTP



•         100Base-FX (Fast Ethernet)

–        100-Mbps throughput, broadband, fiber-optic cabling

•         Multimode fiber containing: at least two strands

–        Half-duplex mode

•         One strand receives, one strand transmits

•         412 meters segment length

–        Full duplex-mode

•         Both strands send and receive

•         2000 meters segment length

–        One repeater maximum

–        IEEE 802.3u standard


-          1000 represents maximum throughput: 1000 Mbps

-          Base indicates base band transmission

-          T stands for twisted pair

-          Maximum Segment length is 100M

-          Physical media is CAT5 (CAT5e) or higher UTP






10GBaseSR / / 10GBaseSW

•         10GBase-SR and 10GBase-SW

–        10G: 10 Gbps

–        Base: baseband transmission

–        S: short reach

–        Physical layer encoding

•         R works with LAN fiber connections

•         W works with SONET fiber connections

–        Multimode fiber: 850 nanometer signal transmission

–        Maximum segment length

•         Depends on fiber diameter



10GBase-LR and 10GBase-LW

–        10G: 10 Gbps

–        Base: baseband transmission

–        L: long reach

–        Single-mode fiber: 1319 nanometer signal transmission

–        Maximum segment length

•         10,000 meters

–        10GBase-LR: WAN or MAN

–        10GBase-LW: SONET WAN links


10GBaseER / 10GBaseEW

•         10GBase-ER and 10GBase-EW

–        E: extended reach

–        Single-mode fiber

•         Transmit signals with 1550 nanometer wavelengths

–        Longest fiber-optic segment reach

•         40,000 meters (25 miles)

–        10GBase-EW

•         Encoding for SONET

–        Best suited for WAN use


-          10G represents maximum throughput: 10000 Mbps

-          Base indicates base band transmission

-          Maximum segment length 10000M

-          Physical media is single mode fibre



-          10G represents maximum throughput: 10000 Mbps

-          Base indicates base band transmission

-          Maximum segment length 100M

-          Physical media is Cat 6 or Cat 7 preferred






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Uber Geek


  #325661 1-May-2010 21:46
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I guess you decided its not worth including the ThinNet (10Base-2) and ThickNet standards, but they really were responsible for Ethernet developing into the standard that it is today. Before switches were available at reasonable prices, trying to run UTP cabling in the now common star topology was expensive and unnecessary.

10Mbps represents the bitrate, not throughput at all. In those days Netbios was a common but inefficient broadcast protocol, so throughput was quite low on any reasonably busy LAN, while TCP/IP is better but still has a significant overhead. The 5-4-3 rule doesnt make much sense unless you explain that it only relates to broadcast domains where 10Base LANs used simple hubs or a coax bus, so the lack of switching put limitations on size of the LAN; so boadcast segments were separated by bridges and the bigger networks routed traffic between subnets. You should also mention that Cat.3 cable was rated for 10Base-T.

Again 100Mbps bitrate is higher that the throughput you could expect.

Cat.5 cable is sufficient for 100Base, no need for Cat.5e cable that came later on. Also uses only pairs 2 and 3 for transmission, so wiring can be split to phone service or another data link (although some equipment occasionally needs the unused pairs).

Cat.5e is rated for Gigabit Ethernet, but Cat.6 improves the chances of achieving rated performance at the specified 100m distance. You are unlikely to get much distance or speed from Cat.5 cable. It uses all 4 pairs for duplex transmission, so no need for crossover cables. Cabling is more sensitive to bend radius and proper twist on all joins to retain a good signal at the higher Gigabit frequencies.

There are lots of standards for 100Base fibre for various distances and wavelengths, but maybe not all of them are officially specified? 100Base-FX seems to be the standard at 1310nm wavelength for 2km reach on multimode fibre, while 100Base-SX uses 850nm wavelenth on multimode fibre for shorter distance (500m) and lower cost. 100Base-LX uses single mode for 10km distance, and 100Base-ZX extended-reach optics can send a signal up to 80km on the low-dispersion 1550nm wavelength. There is probably lots of variation between optic manufacturers, but there is no restriction on repeaters. Amplifiers are a different story, which can amplify a signal but other devices or special fibre might be needed to correct for dispersion and different types noise. It wouldn't be worth spending heaps of $$ to amplify such a slow signal these days.

100BASE-BX is a version of Fast Ethernet over a single strand of single-mode fibre (unlike 100BASE-FX, which uses a pair). The multiplexer splits the signal into transmit and receive wavelengths, 1490 nm downstream 1310 nm upstream. This is the most likely to be used for FTTH.

The standards for Gigabit fibre are a bit easier to follow, looks like you didnt get to that one yet. Similar to 100Base specs, including the 1000BASE-BX10 duplexed version. Note that distance and wavelength (and cost of optics!) are closely related since the shorter/cheaper wavelengths attenuate faster, so LX at 1310nm reaches 10km while ZX at 1550nm can reach 80km.

10Gigabit Ethernet
You should probably point out that 10GBase-T has high latency, uses lots of power, was designed for bulky Cat.6a cable and probably doesnt work on Cat.6 very well since its not rated for 500Mhz signals... But 10G started with the short range 10GBase-CX4 that uses special cables/connectors and has better latency. 10 Gigabit is getting into the realm where fibre has far more advantages, although the cheapest 10GBASE-SR optics are still pretty expensive. Main applications for 10Gigabit so far would be backhaul on new equipment, and backbone for really busy LANs like Storage Area Networks.

Qualified in business, certified in fibre, stuck in copper, have to keep going  ^_^

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