Types and Uses of Backbone Networks

What is a Backbone Network?

A backbone is a component of the computer network infrastructure that connects multiple networks and provides a conduit for data to flow between them. A backbone may connect different local area networks in workplaces, campuses, or buildings. When numerous local area networks (LANs) are linked across a large region, the result is a wide area network (WAN) or metropolitan area network (MAN) if it serves the entire city.

A backbone is a series of passageways that other significant networks connect to for long-distance communication on a massive scale. Various networking technologies collaborate as connecting points or nodes. They are linked by multiple data transmission media such as optical fiber, traditional copper, and even wireless technology such as microwaves and satellites.

The classic definition of a backbone is a tangle of wires that connects multiple networks and acts as a data superhighway idea is still the same, but the execution has expanded. A backbone's capacity is expected to exceed that of the networks it supports.

Types of backbone networks

There are two types of backbone networks −

  • Distributed (Bus backbone), and
  • Collapsed backbone (Star backbone).

These backbones divide their roots so that a building or campus can set up a LAN or subnetwork connection point. Wiring hubs and switches serve as the star's backbone. As a result, a hybrid backbone network topology that combines a distributed backbone with a few hubs or switches has emerged, that is, a structure of structure subnetworks such as token ring.

In a distributed backbone, the use of Ethernet and ATM networks expands for end-users within a building or department of a business. As a result, different organizations are connected to the backbone network via the router.

On the other hand, a collapsed backbone uses a cable to connect each department or level of a building network to a central hub or switches, which is usually found in a wiring closet or computer management, resulting in a star-wired backbone. A backbone is used to connect to numerous networks to link into the campus environment or connect networks via large area networks similarly.

The connecting device is critical in implementing a backbone network because there are no terminals linked to it. Still, it is regarded as a LAN or subnetwork connected to a backbone to construct another subnetwork or LAN.

Bus Backbone (Distributed Backbone)

The Bus backbone does precisely what its name implies − it manages bus topology and any protocols adaptable to the bus topology, such as 10Base2 and 10Base5. To link the several subnetworks on different floors. All of the LANs are connected to the various floors of the building. They also form a star topology backbone, in which numerous LANs are connected by a bus backbone to exchange data and share resources.

The bridge blocks the information traveling from the LAN terminal on the backbone. However, suppose the terminal is exchanging information from another LAN on the backbone bridge. In that case, the LAN is connected to the backbone bridge, which forms a frame containing the data and sends it to the bridge via the backbone. The frame is then sent to the destination LAN and terminal in this manner. Each of the backbone's bridges maintains a table of LANs to aid information flow.

Star backbone (Collapsed Backbone)

The star backbone uses wiring hubs and switches to create a backbone to connect multiple LANs or subnetworks. A single switch connects the different LANs. As a result, it's also known as a flipped backbone. The star backbone connects each floor's LAN to the star backbone. The switch acts as a backbone in the star backbone. It is located in a single area within the building, a computer center or a data center.

From the switch to each floor of the LANs, a separate table flow. Each LAN is configured in a star topology, with hubs installed in a closet on each floor or hubs or switches installed in the exact location as the backbone switch.

Updated on: 28-Oct-2021

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