A CDE Definition
Any network technology that is not Ethernet. For example, ATM, Fibre Channel, Token Ring and InfiniBand are Ethernots. See Ethernet.
The most widely used local area network (LAN) technology. Defined as the 802.3 standard by the IEEE, the Ethernet access method is used to connect computers in a company or home network as well as to connect a single computer to a modem for Internet access. All new computers have Ethernet built in, and old machines can be retrofitted (see Ethernet adapter). Almost every reference to "network ready," "LAN" or "LAN connection" implies Ethernet. See LAN.
Ethernet Is Wired - Wi-Fi Is Wireless
Ethernet uses cables to connect computers; Wi-Fi is its wireless counterpart, and both technologies are used together. See Wi-Fi and wireless router.
10/100 and 10/100/1000
A 10/100 Ethernet port transmits 10 and 100 Mbps, while the maximum speed of a 10/100/1000 "Gigabit" port is 1 Gbps. Ethernet uses the highest common speed between sending and receiving devices. Although wide area networks (WANs) may employ 10 Gigabit Ethernet (10 Gbps), there is no such thing as a single 10/100/1000/10000 port that supports all four speeds (see Gigabit Ethernet and 10 Gigabit Ethernet).
Ethernet and TCP/IP Protocols
Ethernet and TCP/IP work together and comprise the primary communications protocols in a local area network. For details, see Ethernet and TCP/IP.
Invented by Robert Metcalfe and David Boggs at Xerox PARC in 1973, Ethernet first ran at just under 3 Mbps. Metcalfe joined Digital Equipment Corporation where he facilitated a joint venture with Intel and Xerox to collaborate further, and Ethernet Version 1 was finalized in 1980. In 1983, the IEEE approved the Ethernet 802.3 standard. See 100Base-T, Ethernet adapter, Ethernet switch and automotive Ethernet.
ETHERNET CABLE MAXIMUM LENGTHS
(From Device to Switch)
TWISTED PAIR (Metal Wires)
10Base-T 328 ft/100 m
100Base-T 328 ft/100 m
1000Base-T 328 ft/100 m
MM=multimode fiber SM=singlemode
FOIRL MM .6 mi/1 km
10Base-FL MM 1.2 mi/2 km
100Base-FX MM 1.2 mi/2 km
100Base-FX SM 6 mi/10 km
Ethernet Uses a Star Topology
Ethernet Is Everywhere
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Terms By Topic
Click any of the following categories for a list of fundamental terms.