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Network Hubs And Switch

A Hub is a networking device that allows one to connect multiple PCs to a single network. Hubs may be based on Ethernet, Firewire, or USB connections. A switch is a control unit that turns the flow of electricity on or off in a circuit. It may also be used to route information patterns in streaming electronic data sent over networks. In the context of a network, a switch is a computer networking device that connects network segments.

A switch is effectively a higher-performance alternative to a hub. People tend to benefit from a switch over a hub if their home network has four or more computers, or if they want to use their home network for applications that generate significant amounts of network traffic, like multiplayer games or heavy music file sharing. Technically speaking, hubs operate using a broadcast model and switches operate using a virtual circuit model. When four computers are connected to a hub, for example, and two of those computers communicate with each other, hubs simply pass through all network traffic to each of the four computers. Switches, on the other hand, are capable of determining the destination of each individual traffic element (such as an Ethernet frame) and selectively forwarding data to the one computer that actually needs it. By generating less network traffic in delivering messages, a switch performs better than a hub on busy networks.

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