IT3 Revision Cards


Peer-to-peer - Advantages

  • <span style="font-size: 140%;">inexpensive - no expensive servers required.

Costs of sharing can be spread across all computers in the network</span>

  • no network manager is required. Again, each user shares part of the burden
  • easy to set up
  • no reliance on a server
  • lower setup and maintenance
  • peer responsibility - each user decides which resources to share, and with whom.
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Peer-to-peer - Disadvantages

  • backups cannot be made centrally
  • more users need more IT knowledge
  • no central organisation of resources, so can be difficult to locate
  • users with the most resources will have more responsibility, higher costs and slower speeds
  • usually suited for networks of only a few computers
  • poorer secutiry as resources are shared
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Client Sever - Advantages

  • security is storng since it is centralised under the contorl of a manager
  • resources are organised centrally, so shold be easy for clients to lcoate and quality should controlled.
  • the network should be fast since the bandwidth to servers cna be planned in advanced
  • backsups can be done centrally
  • administration is done centrally so most users need little IT knowledge
  • more efficient/load tolerant for large networks
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Client Server - Disadvantages

  • more expensive due to higher cost of servers
  • specialist knowldge needed
  • network managerment systems are more complex to manage and expensive
  • critical reliance on server(s) - network can be unusable if a server fails
  • one machine is more than important than the rest
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Ring Topology


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Ring Topology - Advantages

  • there is no dependence upon a central device
  • very high transmission speeds are possible
  • it is deterministic ie: different performance levesl can be determined for different traffic levels
  • routing between devices is simple because message usually travel in one direction
  • as data is in once direction it can transmit large volumes of data
  • no collisions (as a result of previous point)
  • cabling costs are lower than other topologies. However, star networks may need expensive cabling (fibre optic)
  • each computer has the same access as others so no one node can dominate the network
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Ring Topology - Disadvantages

  • if there is a break in the connection then the whole network fails
  • faults are difficult to locate
  • it is impossible to keep the netowrk running whilst equipment is added or removed because there is only one path for the data to follow
  • LAN only and usually peer-to-peer
  • Security and reliability issues
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Bus Topology


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Bus Topology - Advantages

  • cost-effective due to small amount of cabling
  • simple cable runs
  • easy to add extra devices
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Bus Topology - Disadvantages

  • performance degrades quickly by number of devices
  • break in backbone is fatal
  • security is compromised by each message being received by each device
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Star Topology


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Star Topology - Advantages

  • fault tolerant of breaks in cabling - normally affects just the one device
  • load tolerant: extra nodes each have their own link to the hub
  • easy to reconfigure by adding, removing nodes
  • used to facilitate WANs
  • igf one node goes down the others can still function (but if the central device goes down it cannot function)
  • you can have different transmission speeds between different devices. (faster between most used PCs, slower for printers)
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Star Topology - Disadvantages

  • extra cost of more cabling
  • critical importance of central device (swtich, hub, router)
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Wireless Topology


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Wireless Topology - Advantages

  • easy to set up - no cabling
  • particuarly suited to buildings where cabling would not be acceptable
  • physical topology is flexible - nodes free to move about within range
  • easy to add and remove devices
  • wifi is a global standard - devices can move easily between networks
  • can be used to access wide range of devices including mobile
  • health and safety advantage of no trailing cables
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Wireless Topology - Disadvantages

  • low bandwidth (slow speed)
  • high power consumptio
  • prone to interference
  • short range
  • weak security due to broadcast technology - all signals can be received by all devices within range
  • posisble health issues
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Remote Management

• See which users are using the network

• Check on emails being sent when should be working

• Check on which sites employees visit

• Check on hardware to see what needs upgrading

• Check to see right number of licences

• Guide users through problems

• Log off users who have forgotten to do so

• Check on components to see if any failing

• Shut down stations

• Rebuild stations / re-setup stations / re-install/update software

• Send instant messages

• Clear printer queues at stations

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Factors When Choosing A Network - How It Will Be U

  • what applications will be used?
  • how much data storage will be required>
  • where will the bulk of processing be done?
  • how heavy will communications requirements be?
  • will remove working/telecommuting/videoconferencing etc be required
  • will interactive processing bet done?
  • will batch provessing be a requirement?
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Factors When Choosing A Network - Performance Requ

  • how network is used will largely determine this: quanitity and speed of processing required, how interactive it is to be
  • batch or real time?
  • realiability and availability requirements
  • user-friendlyness
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Factors When Choosing A Network - Security Issues

  • managing staff access to resources
  •  DPA requirments if personal data is held
  • handling copyrighted matreila
  • appropriate use of email, etc
  • use of itnerenet, access to undesirable material
  • keeping outsiders out
  • anti-virus and anti-malware protection
  • handling financial transactions
  • control of wireless devices and portable data storage devices
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Factors When Choosing A Network - Existing Systems

  • sometimes just an extension of existing systems
  • existing systems will often be incorporated into a new system
  • will existing devices and software still work? e.g: computers, printers and other peripherals
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Factors When Choosing A Network - Size of Organsis

  • will a LAN or WAN be required
  • effect on security, network management requirements
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Factors When Choosing A Network - Cost

  • hardware, inclusive of cabling, routers/switches, servers
  • software: netowkr operating system, management software
  • third party communication links
  • staffing, esp network manager
  • training
  • maintenance, including upgrades, adding/moving devices
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Data Warehousing

  • database used to store an large organisation's historical data used by a MIS to extract information to help managers make decision
  • contains archived data in an organised way to make interrogation more productive
  • data is not time-sensitive
  • Exam board example of how data warehousing might benefit a library service:
  • - allows library to store information about every book
  • - allows library to see who has borrowed books and when
  • - can use it to plan future changes or developments in their library system
  • - allows library system to use data mining
  • - speeds up searching at the local library
  • - allows library to find the most popular book and buy more
  • :) - allows business to make use of historic, readily available data for decision making
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Data Mining

  • data warehouses are mined for useful information to help management make decisions
  • - data not neccessarily collected with the intention of being warehoused
  • - mining involves "presumption that dormant within the data are undiscovered patterns, groupings, sequences and associations
  • - mining software uses complex algorithms* to search for patterns
  • Exam board example of how data mining might help a company:
  • - identification of customer needs - Virgin Media use Data Mining to segment and target customers most likely to buy new services or upgrades
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The Internet (Connection 1)

The Internet (Connection 2)

Dial Up & Broadband Compared

  • dial up slow & limits use / download on dial up takes hours compared to broadband
  • dial up used on a phoneline
  • broadband not available everywhere
  • light users may benefit from dial up (broadband subscription vs dial up pay per minute)
  • broadband supports streaming
  • broadband doesn't tie up the phone line
  • search engines faster
  • broadband always on so quicker to update anti-virus software
  • broadband can make cheap phone calls via the internetbroadband used for video conferencing
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FTP: File Transfer Protocol

  • standard internet protocol
  • providing a simple way of transferring files between computers using the internet
  • (by a process which brunches data into packets and sends messages to say each packet has been received)


  • standardised set of rules
  • established to allow the exchange of large files over the internet
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FTP - Advantages

  • (compared to sneding as an attachment in an email)
  • not limited to file size unlike email attachments
  • allows reliable transfer of files between platforms (through email, certain parts of a file may 'break' - through FTP the process wont let this happen)
  • greater security in transder of information (again, the process will keep trying until it gets the full file)
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Distributed Computing over Internet

  • as series of computers networked together
  • each working on solving the same problem


  • sharing same data processing task/project
  • between different computers on a network
  • eg: SETI (Search for Extra-Terrestrial Inteligence)
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Distributed Computing - +/-

  • Advantages:
  • reduces cost because one expensive powerful computer is not needed
  • can pass work anywhere in the world using the internet
  • improved performance as each computer can work on a part of the data
  • more processing power is easy - just add more computers
  • Disadvantages:
  • issues with security of data psread on many PCs
  • havy reliance on networks & communication which may not always be reliable
  • increased cost owing to expensive communication lines
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  • Requirements of e-commerce website:
  • maintaining company website/need for training staff
  • catalgue of stock
  • secure payment/shopping trolly
  • customer orders database
  • order/bid tracking/email confirmation
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