Ethernet can be defined as a way in which computers within the same local area network, commonly referred to as LAN are connected. D’Ambrosia (2010) notes that ever since the 1990s, it has been and remains to be the most common method of connecting and linking computers together. The main idea behind the design of Ethernet is that computers can be able to send data at any time and that a big number of computers have access to it.
When many computers are connected to the same Ethernet, they are said to be members of the same broadcast domain. A broadcast domain can be said to be a logical division within the same computer network whereby all nodes have the ability to reach each other through broadcast at the layer two, otherwise known as the data link layer. Usually, a broadcast domain is from the same LAN segment but sometimes it can have the potential of being bridged from other segments of LAN (Huang et al., 2010). With the current technology, any computer that has the same connection to a switch or an Ethernet repeater is said to be a member of the same broadcast domain. The same classification applies to computers that have the same set of connection with the interconnected repeaters/switches.
There is however a distinction between a broadcast domain and a collision domain. Whereas in broadcast domain all nodes reach each other by broadcast, in collision domain all nodes are usually on the same set of repeaters which are inter-connected. The nodes are further divided by the use of learning bridges and switches (Huang et al., 2010). Compared to broadcast domains, collision domains are usually smaller and are contained within the broadcast domains.
What majorly brings about the distinction between the collision and broadcast domains is the simple Ethernet because a shared transmission system is used by similar systems. In the case of Ethernet without bridges and switches otherwise referred to as simple Ethernet, there is a transmission of data frames to all other nodes contained in a network. For each frame, the destination address is checked by the receiving node and for each frame that is not addressed to the broadcast address or its own mac address, it is ignored.
The early Ethernet technology used for local area networking was a media access control known as Carrier-sense Multiple Access with Collision Detection, commonly abbreviated as CSMA/CD. CSMA/CD uses carrier-sensing as a means of differing transmissions until it reaches a point where no other stations are transmitting (Sen et al., 2011). CSMA/CD which is a modification of the carrier-sense multiple access (CSMA) is usually used to improve the latter’s performance. It achieves this by maintaining transmission immediately after a collision is detected. This helps in shortening the time that is taken before another retry is attempted. However, the growing popularity of Ethernet switches has been making the CSMA/CD to be less important and hence less common.
When exchanging data, Ethernet networks can either use broadband or baseband networks. The difference between the two is on the number or amount of data that passes through them at a time. Both terms describe how data is usually transmitted between the two nodes. For baseband technology, a single data signal or channel or stream is transmitted at a given time. On the other hand, broadband technology usually does the transmission of multiple streams/data signals/channels simultaneously but at the same. A perfect illustration of these two aspects would be a highway and a railway line. In a highway, multiple vehicles can pass at any given point and towards any given direction, which is likened to a broadband. In a railway line, only one train can pass at a time or when multiple trains pass, they can only be headed to the same direction. This is likened to the baseband.
A wavelength service is said to be a large connection of bandwidth that provides data service or high speed internet that is delivered over fiber-optic lanes that are lit. All wavelengths and frequencies of electromagnetic radiation are mainly used for spectroscopy. This includes areas such as X-rays, visible light, infra-red, electromagnetic radiation among others. The shortest wavelengths are contained in gamma rays while the longest are found in the radio waves (D’Ambrosia, 2010). A layman’s example of a wavelength is the distance between the crests of two waves or when two people have the same attitude in general and so can communicate well. All Ethernet technologies usually make use of wavelengths for one computer to be able to communicate to the other computer or computers. One common type of wavelength that is used in Ethernet is the Light wave.
The devices that are used in the Ethernet connectivity can be either half or full duplex. When a device is full duplex, then it can be capable of submit data in both directions in a network at one particular time (Zhang & Ansari, 2019). For the case of half duplex mode, the data also moves in both directions, but unlike the full duplex mode, data here cannot move to the opposite directions at the same time. It is almost the same as the earlier discussed case of broadband and baseband domains which uses the same principle.
It is however important to note that both the full duplex and half duplex modes are important in their own ways. Half duplex for instance are mostly used when it comes to the conservation of bandwidth since in such a case, only a single communication channel is needed and so it is usually shared in alternating manners between the two directions (Zhang & Ansari, 2019).
In conclusion, Ethernet and its related developments are going to take the future of data networking to another level. This is because a lot of strains are being put on the existing data centers due to the growing need to host, process and transmit more data and in a smaller amount of time.