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LifeGuard Networks
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Hudson, MA 01749


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Glossary IP Solutions
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CAT 3 Cable There are categories, or levels, of twisted pair cabling. Each level describes the performance characteristics of wiring standards. Category 3 (CAT 3) is less expensive than CAT 5, and its transfer rate isn’t as fast; in fact, you can hardly find CAT 3 in use anymore.

Cat 5 Cable There are categories, or levels, of twisted-pair cabling. Each level describes the performance characteristics of wiring standards. Category 5 (CAT 5) is the best cable for any network-business or home. CAT 5 works equally well with 10Base-Tor with 100Base-T.

Client A computer that accesses shared network resources provided by a server. Also refers to one-half of a program installed on a workstation; the other half of the program is installed on a server. The two halves work together to provide data to the user. Also, the network client is the software that enables your computer to become a member of a network.

Data Bits Describes the number of bits used to transmit a piece of information, usually 7 or 8.

Dedicated Line A special high-speed, hard-wired (limited flexibility) connection that is permanent. The connection is always active and therefore always ready.

Default Gateway A physical device that connects two network segments. The gateway address looks like an IP address.

DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol) A utility for assigning TCP/IP addresses to workstations automatically.

DNS See Domain Name System.

Domain Name IP addresses are difficult to remember, so domain names can also represent a computer on the Internet. Microsoft’s domain name, for example, is www.microsoft.com. Domain names usually start with www, which stands for World Wide Web; however www is not always included in an address. Some addresses route to a different server and therefore use different prefixes than www; other addresses use a generic routing, so if you don’t use www, the link finds its way on its own.

Domain Name System (DNS) A method of matching IP addresses with domain names. When you type a domain name in the URL address area of your browser, that query is transmitted to a Domain Name Server. A Domain Name Server maintains a database of domain names and IP addresses. The Domain Name Server finds the IP address that matches the domain name and then sends your request on to that server. The process is called name resolution.

DSL (Digital Subscriber Line) A digital technology that transmits data in both directions at once over copper lines (existing phone lines), just like the ones the ISDN service uses. DSL also transmits voice and video. Speeds for DSL are around 160 Kbps. DSL lines are secure and offer low interference.

Ethernet A protocol and cabling scheme that transfers data at the rate of 10 Mbps. Ethernet can use the bus or the spanning tree topology connected with various cabling types.

Fiber-Optic Cabling A fiber-optic cable transmits data in pulses of light along specially manufactured optical fibers. Fiber-optic cable is lighter and smaller than traditional copper cables, and it is immune to electrical interference. Fiber-optic cable also offers better signal transmission. Unfortunately, fiber-optics is also extremely expensive. The cable is difficult to install and hard to repair, thus, maintenance is more difficult as well.

File Server A computer with a fast processor and a lot of storage space (in the gigabyte range) that is used to store files in a client/server network.

File Transfer Protocol (FTP) TCP/IP protocol, FTP enables the exchange of bulk information over an intranet or the Internet.