In this chapter
Now that we've sorted out the differences between peer-to-peer networks and server-based networks and looked at some of the hardware considerations for network clients and servers, we can concentrate on issues related to actually setting up a network's infrastructure. The word infrastructure is probably one of those words that is both overused and misused by network administrators. For example, when something goes wrong on the network, it is very convenient to tell management that there is "an infrastructure anomaly," which actually means "I have no idea what the problem is."
However, if you think about an infrastructure like our U.S. highway system, two things stand out: An infrastructure is both a physical construct (such as miles and miles of roads ) and a place where certain rules have been devised for users of the infrastructure (such as speed limits, stop signs, all those things that drivers west of Ohio completely ignore).
Networks are no different; their infrastructure will consist of some kind of network medium such as copper cabling or radio waves. Rules for how computers and other devices actually access the network infrastructure will also be set in place. The first thing that we will look at in this chapter is network architectures. The network architecture you use for your network defines how network devices access your network medium.