Glossary of Networking Terms


Access Point – In networking, an access point is a bridge that converts RF to Ethernet. It allows end devices such as other PC?s, PDAs, etc. to connect to a LAN.


Adapter Cards – cards that can be installed in expansion slots located on the Central Processing Unit of a computer. These cards enhance the flexibility of the computer to accept devices such as monitors, memory adapters, parallel and serial peripherals.


Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) – is an encryption algorithm for securing sensitive but unclassified material by U.S. Government agencies. It may eventually become the de facto encryption standard for commercial transactions in the private sector.


Alternating Current (AC) – In electricity, alternating current (AC) occurs when charge carriers in a conductor or semiconductor periodically reverse their direction of movement. Household utility current in most countries is AC with a frequency of 60 hertz.


American National Standards Institute (ANSI) – is the primary organization for fostering the development of technology standards in the United States. It is the U.S. member of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). Long-established computer standards from ANSI include the American Standard Code for Information Interchange (ASCII) and the Small Computer System Interface (SCSI).


American Standard Code for Information Interchange (ASCII) – is the most common format for text files and serial communications in computers and on the Internet. Each alphabetic, numeric, or special character is represented with a 7 or 8 bit number (a string of seven or eight 0s or 1s). 256 possible characters are defined in the ASCII character set, but the lower 128 are used most often.


Application Program Interface (API) – is the specific method by which an application program can make requests of the operating system or another application.


Asynchronous – a signal that is transmitted at a different clock rate than another signal. Synchronous signals are those that run at the same clock rate.


Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM) – is a dedicated-connection switching technology that organizes digital data into 53-byte cell units and transmits them over a physical medium using digital signal technology. Because ATM is designed to be easily implemented by hardware (rather than software), faster processing and switch speeds are possible.


Attachment User Interface (AUI) – Attachment user interface that specifies how a transceiver is attached to an Ethernet device.


Authentication Server – is a server application that provides authentication services for clients attempting to connect to a network. Authentication servers are part of a larger entity of devices, methods and protocols that serve to provide secure access to networks.


Automated Identification & Data Capture (AIDC) – synonymous with the Automatic Data Collection (ADC) industry, it utilizes hardware such as handheld, computers, wireless networks, scanners, printers, and software to collect data by RFID, Touch Memory and barcodes.


Backbone – is a larger transmission line that carries data gathered from smaller lines that interconnect with it. At the local level, a backbone is a set of lines that local area networks (LAN) connect to for a wide area network (WAN) connection or within a local area network to span distances efficiently (for example, between buildings).


Bandwidth – has a general meaning of how much information can be carried in a given time period over a wired or wireless communications link. Technically, bandwidth is the width of the range of frequencies that an electronic signal occupies on a given transmission medium. Any digital or analog signal has a bandwidth. In digital systems, bandwidth is expressed as bits (of data) per second (bps) or Kbps or Mbps.


Bar code – is the image of lines (bars) and spaces affixed to retail store items, identification cards, products, documents, postal mail, etc. to identify a product number, person, or location. The code uses a sequence of bars and spaces to represent numbers and other symbols, known as a symbology.


Baseband – is a network or other telecommunication system in which information is carried in digital form on a single unmultiplexed signal channel on the transmission medium. This usage pertains to a baseband network such as Ethernet and Token Ring local area networks (LAN). See also Broadband.


Batch – refers to a way that automatic data collection computers operate. Batch devices run a software application that prompts the user for data. Data is collected and stored in memory or in a data file. At the end of the day, the device is placed in a dock, cradle or otherwise connected to a PC and the stored data is downloaded to the host.


Baud – A measurement of the signaling speed of a data transmission device. At low speeds (under 300 bits per second) bits per second and baud (rate) are the same. As speeds increase baud and bits are not the same because several bits are typically encoded per baud.


Bi-Directional – Characteristic of a printer, in which print element moves first to the right on one line, then to the left on the following line.


Bit – In computers, all data is represented at the lowest level with the binary number system, which consists of 0s and 1s. A bit is a single 0 or 1. There are 8 bits in a byte.


Bridge – In networking, a bridge extends the maximum distance of your network by connecting network segments which can be dissimilar. Bridges determine the physical (MAC) address of the destination of a packet and will then rebroadcast the signal only if it resides on the other segment.


Broadband – refers to telecommunications in which a wide band of frequencies are available to transmit information. Because of this, information can be multiplexed and sent on many different frequencies or channels within the band, it allows more information to be transmitted in a given amount of time.


Buffer – A temporary-storage device used to compensate for a difference in data rate and data flow between two devices (typically a computer and a printer): also called a spooler.


Bus Network – A network topology in which all terminals are attached to a transmission medium serving as a bus.


Byte – In computers, all data is represented at the lowest level with 0s and 1s. A single 0 or 1 is a bit. A byte consists of 8 bits.


Central Processing Unit (CPU) – The part of a computer that contains the logic computation and control circuits. It controls the interpretation and execution of instructions and sometimes contains memory.


Client – is the requesting program or user in a client/server relationship. For example, the user of a Web browser is effectively making client requests for pages from servers all over the Web. The browser itself is a client in its relationship with the computer that is getting and returning the requested HTML file. The computer handling the request and sending back the HTML file is a server. Email such as Outlook, is another example of client.


Client/Server – Client/server describes the relationship between two computer programs in which one program, the client, makes a service request from another program, and the server fulfills the request. In a network, the client/server model provides a convenient way to interconnect programs that are distributed efficiently across different locations.


Coaxial Cable – is called “coaxial” because it includes one physical channel that carries the signal surrounded by another concentric physical channel, both running along the same axis. The outer channel serves as a ground. Many of these cables or pairs of coaxial tubes can carry information for a great distance. Coaxial cable used in networking typically comes in 10Base2 or 10Base5.


Communication Protocol –The rules governing the exchange of information between devices on a data link.


Communications System – A collection of individual communications networks, transmission systems, relay stations, tributary stations and terminal equipment capable of interconnection and inter-operation to form integral whole. These individual components must serve a common purpose, be technically compatible, employ common procedures, respond to some form of control and, in general, operate in unison.


Computer Peripherals – The auxiliary devices under control of a central computer such as card punches and readers, high speed printers, magnetic tape units and optical character readers.


Controller – A unit that controls input/output operations for one or more devices.


Data Rate – The maximum number of bits of information which can be transmitted per second. Typically expressed as megabits per second (Mb/s).


Direct Current (DC) – is the unidirectional flow or movement of electric charge carriers, usually electron. The term DC is used in reference to voltage whose polarity never reverses. Most data collection equipment takes DC power.


Decoded – Usually refers to a decoded or decoding barcode scanner. In the old days, scanners transmitted data called raw count data which is simply a list of the amounts of time spent on each bar and space in a barcode. It was then up to another device called a reader or decoder to translate the raw count data into something meaningful such as ASCII data. The decoder would then transmit the data to a host computer. Today, scanners can decode the raw count data into ASCII or Keycode data and transmit it straight to the host computer.


Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) – is a communications protocol that lets network administrators manage centrally and automate the assignment of Internet Protocol (IP) addresses in an organization’s network. Each machine that can connect to the Internet needs a unique IP address. When an organization sets up its computer users with a connection to the network, an IP address must be assigned to each machine manually without DHCP. With DHCP, the IP addresses may be assigned to each computer automatically. DHCP lets a network administrator supervise and distribute IP addresses from a central point.


Dip Switch – A series of tiny switches built into circuit boards. DIP switches enable you to configure a circuit board for a particular type of computer or application. DIP switches are always toggle switches?they have two possible positions?on or off.


Disk Operating System (DOS) – was the first widely-installed operating system for personal computers. DOS is a non-graphical line-oriented command- or menu-driven operating system, with a relatively simple interface but not overly “friendly” user interface.


Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) – is a technology for bringing high-bandwidth information to homes and small businesses over ordinary copper telephone lines. A DSL line can carry both data and voice signals. The data part of the line is continuously connected.


Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) – Computer-to-computer communication between two or more companies.


Electro Magnetic Interference (EMI) – is the disruption of operation of an electronic device when it is in the vicinity of an electromagnetic field in the radio frequency (RF) spectrum that is caused by another electronic device.


Electro Static Discharge (ESD) – is the release of static electricity when two objects come into contact. If not properly grounded, ESD can cause serious damage to electronic equipment.


Ethernet – is the most widely-installed local area network (LAN) technology. Specified in the 802.3 standard from the IEEE, an Ethernet LAN typically uses coaxial cable or special grades of twisted pair wires. Ethernet is also used in wireless LANs. The most commonly installed Ethernet systems are called 10BASE-T and provides transmission speeds up to 10Mbps. Devices are connected to the cable and compete for access using a Carrier Sense Multiple Access with Collision Detection (CSMA/CD) media access method. Fast Ethernet or 100BASE-T provides transmission speeds up to 100Mbps and is typically used for LAN backbone systems, supporting workstations with 10BASE-T network interface cards (NIC). Gigabit Ethernet provides an even higher level of backbone support at 1000Mbps (1Gbps or 1 billion bits per second). 10-Gigabit Ethernet provides speeds up to 10 billion bits per second.


Firmware – is software that is inserted into programmable read-only memory (PROM), thus becoming a permanent part of a computing device. Firmware is created and tested like software using processor emulators. Most data collection scanners, readers, printers, network devices, and other peripherals have firmware.


Gatekeeper – A server that handles the addressing between the IP network and individual telephone numbers and that initializes call setups; call management system.


Gateway – is a network point that acts as an entrance to another network. On the Internet, a node or stopping point can be either a gateway node or a host (end-point) node. Both the computers of Internet users and the computers that serve pages to users are host nodes. The computers that control traffic within your company’s network or at your local Internet service provider (ISP) are gateway nodes.


Hub – is a network device that provides a central point of connection between media segments. Hubs are special repeaters that pass a signal onto multiple segments.


Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) – is a scripting language that is used to create web pages and is written in HTML.


Hypertext Transfer Protocol – HTTP is the protocol used to deliver web pages from the web server to the web client (your computer).


Interface – An interface is either:

1.A user interface, consisting of the set of dials, knobs, operating system commands, graphical display formats, and other devices provided by a computer or program to allow the user to communicate and use the computer or program.

2.A programming interface, consisting of the set of statements, functions, options, and other ways of expressing program instructions and data provided by a program or language for a programmer to use.

3. The physical and logical arrangement supporting the attachment of any device to a connector to another device. With hardware equipment, to interface means making an appropriate physical connection so that two pieces of equipment can communicate or work together effectively.


Interoperability – is the ability of a system or a product to work with other systems or products without special effort on the part of the customer.


Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) – is a non-profit, technical professional association of more than 380,000 individual members in 150 countries. Through its members, the IEEE is a leading authority in technical areas ranging from computer engineering, biomedical technology and telecommunications, to electric power, aerospace and consumer electronics. The IEEE has created the 802 specifications, which pertain to networking.


Intranet -is a private network that is contained within an enterprise. It may consist of many interlinked local area networks (LAN) and also uses leased lines in the Wide Area Network (WAN). The main purpose of an intranet is to share company information and computing resources among employees.


Input/Output (I/O) – is a term used in programming and digital circuit design to refer to functions or circuits that dealt specifically with input and/or output functionality of hardware or software.


Internet Protocol (IP) – is the method or protocol by which data is sent from one computer to another on a network. Each computer (known as a host) on the network has at least one IP address that uniquely identifies it from all other computers on the network. When you send or receive data, the message gets divided into little chunks called packets. Each of these packets contains the sender’s Internet address, the receiver’s address, and data.


IP Address – is a 32-bit number that identifies each sender or receiver of information that is sent in packets across the Internet or a network. Unlike a MAC address, an IP address is a logical address and is assigned to a computer, printer or other device on a network either manually or automatically by a DHCP server.


Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN) – is a set of standards for digital transmission over ordinary telephone copper wire as well as over other media.


Keycode – Wedge readers and scanners transmit keycode data. Unlike ASCII data, a keycode is what is sent by a PC?s or terminal?s keyboard to the PC or terminal.


Local Area Network (LAN) – is a group of computers and associated devices that share a common communications line and typically share the resources of a single processor or server within a small geographic area.


LEAP (Lightweight Extensible Authentication Protocol) – LEAP is the lightweight version of EAP. LEAP is one of several protocols used with the IEEE 802.1x standard for LAN port access control. The primary difference between LEAP and EAP/TLS is that LEAP uses a username and password to authenticate while EAP/TLS uses digital certificates.


Linux – is a Unix-like operating system designed to provide personal computer users a free or very low-cost operating system.


Media Access Control (MAC) – On a local area network (LAN) or other network, the MAC address is a device?s unique hardware number. Every Network Interface Card (NIC) in the world has a unique MAC address.


Modem (Modulator – Demodulator)–A device used to convert serial digital data for transmission over a telephone channel, or to reconvert the transmitted signal to serial digital data for acceptance by a receiving terminal.


Multi-User – Multi-user systems consist of two or more computers that are connected together and that share data and peripherals. A multi-user system includes a host computer (file server) and one or more stations. All stations share the same hard disk and may share other devices such as printers.


Network – A communications system connecting two or more computers and their peripheral devices.


Network Card – An expansion card that is installed in an available slot in a computer so that it may connect and communicate to another computer.


Network Interface Card (NIC) – Each device (Node) on a network will have a NIC. The NIC is installed inside the device and serves as the interface to the network. The NIC can be Ethernet, Token Ring, RF, or other. It provides a real-time dedicated connection to the network.


Node – In a network, a node is a connection point, either a redistribution point or an end point for data transmissions. In general, a node has programmed or engineered capability to recognize and process or forward transmissions to other nodes. Computers, printers, and other devices connected to a network are also referred to as nodes.


Operating System (OS) – is the program that, after being initially loaded into a computer by a boot program, manages all the other programs in a computer. The other programs are called applications.


Packet -is the unit of data that is routed between an origin and a destination on any packet-switched network such as Ethernet. When any file is sent from one place to another on the network, TCP/IP divides the file into “chunks” of an efficient size for routing. Each of these packets is separately numbered and includes the IP address of source and the destination. The individual packets for a given file may travel different routes through the network to the destination. When they have all arrived, they are reassembled into the original file (by TCP/IP at the receiving end).


PC Card – is a credit card-size memory or I/O device that fits into a personal computer, usually a notebook or laptop computer. Probably the most common use of a PC Card is the telecommunications modem and network adaptor for notebook computers.


Protected Extensible Authentication Protocal (PEAP) – uses server-side digital certificates to create an encrypted SSL/TLS tunnel between the client and the authentication server. The tunnel then protects the subsequent user authentication exchange. PEAP is not an authentication algorithm.


PING (Packet Internetwork Grouper) – is a basic Internet program that lets you verify that a particular IP address exists and can accept requests. Ping is used diagnostically to ensure that a network computer you are trying to reach is actually operating. If, for example, a user can’t ping a host, then the user will be unable to use the File Transfer Protocol (FTP) to send files to that host. Ping can also be used with a host that is operating to see how long it takes to get a response back. Using ping, you can learn the IP address of the host. Ping operates by sending a packet to a designated address and waiting for a response.


Parallel Transmission – Transmission mode that sends a number of bits simultaneously over separate lines, usually unidirectional.


Peripheral Device – Hardware that is outside of the system unit, such as a disk drive, printer, cash drawer, or scanner.


Polling – A means of controlling devices on multi-point line. Usually utilized to send/receive information via modem from remote computers to a central computer.


Power Over Ethernet (PoE) – In the old days, when installing access points, the customer or installer had to run data cabling such as UTP and electrical cable to power access points. UTP cable has four pairs of wires, only two pairs are used to carry data. A few years ago, someone thought to carry power to the access points through the one of the other pairs of wires in the data cable, thereby eliminating the need for installing electrical cable which can be quite expensive.


Point of Sale (POS) – is any checkout counter in a retail or wholesale outlet. Much more complex than the cash registers of even just a few years ago, the POS system can include the ability to scan barcodes, record and track customer orders, process credit and debit cards, connect to other systems in a network, and manage inventory. Generally, a POS terminal has as its core a personal computer, which is provided with application-specific programs and I/O devices for the particular environment in which it will serve.


POS (Point-of-Sale) – Term normally used to describe cash register systems that record transactions or the area of “checkout” in a retail store.


Power Injector – A power injector is a device that delivers DC power over a network cable such as CAT5 UTP cable. This process is known as Power Over Ethernet (PoE). The use of a power injector can eliminate the need to run AC power to each access point location.


Protocol – is a set of rules governing a communication event in serial, parallel, network, wireless and other forms of electronic communication. Protocols exist at several levels in a telecommunication connection. There are hardware protocols, protocols between functional layers of a network, and others. Both end points of a communication must recognize and observe a protocol.


Real-Time – Contrary to Batch, a real-time data collection computer or system is connected by wire or wireless to a host computer or system. As data is collected, it is transmitted directly to the host application.


Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) – RFID is a technology that incorporates the use of electromagnetic or electrostatic coupling in the RF portion of the electromagnetic spectrum to uniquely identify an object, animal, or person. RFID is coming into increasing use in industry as an alternative to the barcode. The advantage of RFID is that it does not require direct contact or line-of-sight scanning. An RFID system consists of three components: an antenna and transceiver (often combined into one reader) and a transponder (the tag). The antenna uses RF waves to transmit a signal that activates the transponder. When activated, the tag transmits data back to the antenna. The data is used to notify a programmable logic controller that an action should occur. The action could be as simple as raising an access gate or as complicated as interfacing with a database to carry out a monetary transaction.


Registered Jack – Telephone jacks sometimes described as RJ-XX, are a series of telephone connection interfaces (receptacle and plug).

RJ11 – Common telephone jack. Usually four wires.

RJ14 – similar to RJ11 but supports two phone lines.

RJ45 – Used for digital transmissions (networking).


Robust – Robust is an adjective commonly applied to information technology products.

1) A robust product can be one that doesn’t break easily. An operating system in which any individual application can fail without disturbing the operating system or other applications can be said to be robust.

2) Robust is also sometimes used to mean a product or system of products designed with a full complement of capabilities.


Router – On a network, a router is a device or, in some cases, software in a computer, that determines the next network point to which a packet should be forwarded toward its destination. The router is connected to at least two networks and decides which way to send each information packet based on its current understanding of the state of the networks it is connected to. A more intelligent form of a router is a gateway.


RS-232 – is a long-established standard that describes the physical interface and protocol for relatively low-speed serial data communication between computers and related devices. RS-232 is the interface that your computer uses to talk to and exchange data with your modem and other serial devices. RS232 supports up to 256Kbps and cable lengths of up to 50 ft. Many data collection terminals have RS232 ports. RS232 connectors are available in different form factors. The 9 pin version is most common and is found on the back of most PCs.


RS-422 – provides full-duplex asynchronous point to point communication via two twisted pair. RS422 was designed for greater distances and higher Baud rates than RS232. Data rates of up to 100K bits / second and distances up to 4000 Ft. can be accommodated with RS422. RS422 is also specified for multi-drop (party-line) applications where only one driver is connected to, and transmits on, a “bus” of up to 10 receivers.


RS-485 – is used for multipoint communications. Similar to Ethernet networks which use coaxial cable, most RS 485 systems use Master/Slave architecture, where each slave unit has its unique address and responds only to packets addressed to this unit. These packets are generated by Master (e.g. PC), which periodically polls all connected slave units.


Serial Transmission–Transmission mode that sends data one bit at a time. In most cases, in personal computers, serial data is passed through as RS232 serial interface port.


Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) – is a protocol for transmitting private documents via the Internet. SSL works by using a private key to encrypt data that’s transferred over the SSL connection. Both Netscape Navigator and Internet Explorer support SSL, and many Web sites use the protocol to obtain confidential user information, such as credit card numbers. By convention, URLs that require an SSL connection start with https: instead of http: This protocol has been approved by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) as a standard.


Server – In general, a server is a computer program that provides services to other computer programs, called clients, in the same or other computers. In the client/server programming model, a server is a program that awaits and fulfills requests from client programs in the same or other computers. A given application in a computer may function as a client with requests for services from other programs and also as a server of requests from other programs.


Small Office Home Office (SOHO) – In information technology, SOHO is a term for the small office or home office environment and business culture. The term “virtual office” is sometimes used as a synonym.


Subnet Mask – Once a packet has arrived at an organization’s gateway or connection point with its unique network address, it can be routed within the organization’s internal gateways using the host address. The router knows which bits to look at (and which not to look at) by looking at a subnet mask. A mask is simply a screen of numbers that tells you which numbers to look at underneath, specifically an IP address. Using a mask saves the router having to handle the entire 32 bit address; it can simply look at the bits selected by the mask.


Switch – Switches are very intelligent hubs. They can perform intelligent path selection and minimize the amount of network traffic and hide the traffic from devices not involved in a dialog.


Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol – TCP/IP (TCP/IP) is the basic communication protocol of the Internet. It can also be used as a communications protocol in a private network.


Terminal Emulation (TE) – is the act of emulating a dumb data terminal to remotely access a host computer or mainframe.


Thick Client – A thick client usually refers to a PC or other computer or an application that is considered robust. It performs a variety of complex tasks, which communicate with a host server application.


Thicknet – Thicknet (sometimes called ThickWire) is a commonly used term for the larger size of coaxial cable used in Ethernet local area networks. Thicknet was the original Ethernet wiring, but Thinnet, which is cheaper and can be installed more easily, is the more commonly installed cable of the two for Ethernet networks. Thicknet, aka 10BASE-5 continues to be used for backbone wiring. A lower cost alternative to Thinnet on an Ethernet network is unshielded twisted pair (UTP).


Thin Client – is a low-cost, centrally-managed computer devoid of CD-ROM players, diskette drives, and expansion slots. The term derives from the fact that small computers in networks tend to be clients and not servers. Since the idea is to limit the capabilities of these computers to only essential applications, they tend to be purchased and remain “thin” in terms of the client applications they include. The term also refers to software applications that provide a minimal but common function.


Thinnet – (sometimes called ThinWire) is a commonly used term for the smaller size of coaxial cable used in Ethernet local area networks. Thinnet, also known as Cheapernet and 10BASE-2. Thicknet was the original Ethernet wiring, but Thinnet is the more commonly installed Ethernet wire of the two.  A lower cost alternative to Thinnet on an Ethernet network is unshielded twisted pair (UTP).


Transport Layer Security (TLS) – is a protocol that guarantees privacy and data integrity between client/server applications communicating over the Internet.


Token Ring is a LAN in which all computers are connected in a ring or star topology and a bit- or token-passing scheme is used in order to prevent the collision of data between two computers that want to send messages at the same time.


User Datagram Protocol (UDP) – is a communications protocol that offers a limited amount of service when messages are exchanged between computers in a network that uses the Internet Protocol (IP). UDP is an alternative to the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) and, together with IP, is sometimes referred to as UDP/IP. Like TCP, UDP uses the Internet Protocol to actually get a data unit (called a datagram) from one computer to another. Unlike TCP, however, UDP does not have all of the overhead such as error checking and transmission retries. As a result, UDP is much faster than TCP but not as reliable.


Undecoded – scanners collect raw count data and transmit it to a decoder that converts the data and into ASCII data.


Unix – is an operating system that has evolved as a kind of large freeware product, with many extensions and new ideas provided in a variety of versions of Unix by different companies, universities, and individuals, such as SCO, Sun Microsystems and Linux. Because Unix is not owned by anyone, it became the first open or standard operating system that could be improved or enhanced by anyone.


Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) – A UPS is a device that allows your computer to keep running for at least a short time when the primary power source is lost. It also provides protection from power surges. It “kicks in” when the device senses a loss of power from the primary source. If you are using the computer when the UPS notifies you of the power loss, you have time to save any data you are working on and exit gracefully before the secondary power source (the battery) runs out. When all power runs out, any data in your computer’s random access memory (RAM) is erased. When power surges occur, a UPS intercepts the surge so that it doesn’t damage your computer.


Uniform Resource Locator (URL) – identifies a file that can be accessed via the HyperText Transfer Protocol (HTTP), in other words, web pages.


Universal Serial Bus (USB) – is a plug-and-play interface between a computer and add-on devices (such as audio players, joysticks, keyboards, telephones, scanners, printers). With USB, a new device can be added to your computer without having to add an adapter card or even having to turn the computer off.


Unshielded Twisted Pair (UTP) – UTP cable is used for analog and digital communications. Flat gray UTP cable is used for phone lines and thicker UTP cable of various colors is used for digital networking. UTP cable has two to four pairs of wires, each pair is twisted around each other. UTP has no metallic shielding around the pairs. Category 5 or CAT5 cable is a popular cable used for networking and has four pairs. This type of cable is used in the IEEE 10BASE-T and 100BASE-T specifications for wired Ethernet networks.


Virtual Private Network (VPN) – is a way to use a public telecommunication infrastructure, such as the Internet, to provide remote offices or individual users with secure access to their organization’s network.


Wide Area Network (WAN) – is a geographically dispersed telecommunications network, sometimes global in nature. The term distinguishes a broader telecommunication structure from a local area network (LAN) or a Metropolitan Area Network (MAN). A wide area network may be privately owned or rented, but the term usually connotes the inclusion of public (shared user) networks.


Wedge – A wedge reader receives raw undecoded data from a scanner and converts it into keyboard data called Keycodes. A wedge reader is connected between a terminal or computer and its keyboard. Keyed data is simply passed through the wedge to the terminal. Scanned data is converted to keycodes and passed to the terminal as if it was typed. The terminal is not aware of the wedge. Scanners with a wedge interface are also available, eliminating the need for a wedge reader. They come with a cable set for specific terminals and interface between the keyboard and terminal.


Y-CABLE – A cable that normally allows two peripheral devices to communicate off of one port on a computer.


10Base-2 – one of several physical media specified by IEEE 802.3 for use in an Ethernet local area network (LAN), consists of Thinwire (a.k.a. Thinnet) coaxial cable with a maximum segment length of 185 meters. 10BASE-2 supports Ethernet’s 10 Mbps data rate.


10Base-5 – one of several physical media specified by IEEE 802.3 for use in an Ethernet local area network (LAN), consists of Thickwire (a.k.a. Thicknet) coaxial cable with a maximum segment length of 500 meters. 10BASE-5 supports Ethernet’s 10 Mbps data rate.


10BASE-T – One of several physical media specified in the IEEE 802.3 standard for Ethernet local area networks (LANs), is ordinary telephone unshielded twisted pair (UTP) wire. 10BASE-T supports Ethernet’s 10 Mbps transmission speed.


100Base-T – one of several physical media specified in the IEEE 802.3 standard for Ethernet local area networks (LANs), is ordinary telephone unshielded twisted pair (UTP) wire. 100BASE-T supports Ethernet’s 100 Mbps transmission speed.