There are different ways of setting up a LAN, each with different benefits in terms of network speed and cost. Three of the main topologies include bus, star and ring.

Bus network

In a bus network all the workstationsservers and printers are joined to one cable - 'the bus'. At each end of the cable a terminator is fitted to stop signals reflecting back down the bus.


  • - easy to install
  • - cheap to install - it does not require much cabling


  • - if the main cable fails or gets damaged, the whole network will fail
  • - as more workstations are connected, the performance of the network will become slower because of data collisions
  • - every workstation on the network 'sees' all of the data on the network, which can be a security risk

Ring network

In a ring network, each device (eg workstation, server, printer)


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