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What is Network Hub, its types and how it works?

Network Hub is a very basic networking device, using it multiple computers are connected with other networking devices. Now for your information, let me tell you that Hubs are such common network infrastructure devices which are used for LAN connectivity, while switches have now started replacing hubs. Hubs function according to the central connection point of LANs.

Whereas people have many doubts regarding Hubs. So today I thought why not provide complete information to you about what Hubs are so that you can know how this networking device works and what are its advantages and disadvantages. Then without delay let’s start.

What is Hub?
Hub is a device that splits a network connection into multiple computers. It is similar to a distribution center. When a computer requests information from a network or a specific computer, then it sends that request to the hub through a cable.

What is Network Hub?
Then the hub receives that request and transmits it to the entire network. Every computer in that network then has to know whether the data that has been broadcast is for them or not.

But right now these Hubs are very less in vogue and they are being replaced by more advanced communication devices such as Switches and Routers.

This hub is basically a multiport repeater. This hub is used to connect multiple wires which come from different branches, for example the connector which is used in star topology and it is used to connect different stations.

Hubs cannot filter data, so data packets are sent to all connected devices. In other words, all hosts that are connected to the hub have collision domain one (1).

Apart from this, they do not even have their own intelligence so that they can find the best path for data packets, which ultimately leads to their wastage and inefficiencies.

Types of Hub
When it comes to the types of hubs, they can be divided into three broad categories on technical bases. They are Passive hubs, active hubs and intelligent hubs.

Passive Hub
Passive Hubs are called those hubs that collect wiring from Active Hub’s nodes and power supply. These hubs relay signals in the network without cleaning and boosting them, plus they cannot be used to extend the distance between nodes.

As its name is passive, in the same way it only broadcasts signals through the input port, while it sends them through the output port.

Whereas it does nothing to regenerate or process signals because it only functions like a connector to connect many wires in a topology.

These are called those hubs which have their own power supply and they themselves can clean, boost and relay Signals in the network. Both of these serve as a repeater and a wiring center. They are used to extend the maximum distance between the nodes.

This active hub works more than a connector, while it regenerates data bits to ensure that the signals are strong or not. Active hub is another name for a multiport repeater.

It actively participates in a network as well as behaves like an interface. It can also easily monitor data before forwarding them and sometimes it even improves signals before forwarding them to other connections.

Network problems can be easily troubleshooted by having such a feature.

Intelligent Hub
An intelligent hub can easily perform all the tasks that a passive hub and an active hub do, and together they help in effectively managing network resources so that the performance of the network is highly efficient.

Through an intelligent hub, the actual location of the problem can be identified so that it can be rooted out. It is highly adaptable to different technologies and can be used without much change in its configuration.

This intelligent hub also performs many different functions such as bridging, routing, switching and network management.

What is network hub
Network hub is a networking device that is connected to multiple peripherals in a network and helps them to act like a single segment, whereas unlike a switch or router, it broadcasts data across each connection. It does not route them to a specific device.

Network hubs also have different speeds, which are called network data rate or bandwidth. Where earlier older network hubs provided only 10 Mbps speeds, the current hubs provide speeds of up to 100 Mbps.

In today’s large networks, it is necessary that a dual speed network hub is used, and it comes in both 10 and 100 Mbps which provides connection points to computers and printers.

Therefore, before purchasing the hub, note that how many equipments are going to be connected with that network hub of yours.

What are the features of Network Hub?
Do you know the maximum number of computers that can be connected to a large hub? If we talk about a USB hub, then we can connect 127 devices in it and 32 in the network hub. Let us now know what are the features of Network Hub.

  • It operates in half duplex mode.
  • It is available in 4 to 24 port sizes.
  • Hosts are only responsible in this if there is a collision detection and retransmission of packets.
  • There are mainly three types of these: – Active hub, passive hub and intelligent hub.

How does the Hub work?
If we look in the right sense, then a network hub is more of a variable port repeater, and not just a common link for a cluster of computers. Its very common operation is that whatever information it receives, it forwards it to all the PC terminals that are attached to it.

The one big disadvantage in this is that there is repetition of data in it, so that unnecessary data traffic is sent to the network. That’s why data is sent in bulk without identifying its destination.

Whereas if we compare it with switches, then it works in a more efficient way, switches control the flow of data traffic in an organized way. A switch is a very intelligent device. It easily identifies to whom the data should be sent.

Transferring the correct data packets to the appropriate units increases the network bandwidth. That’s why we can say that using Switch in place of Hubs does not cause unnecessary data load in the network. With this unnecessary data flow, the same amount of information is sent to all the units whether they are needed there or not.

Hubs are used more in small networks, while Switch is used in large networks. These network hubs are devices that operate in layer one (physical layer) of the OSI Model, while switches operate in layer 2 (data link layer) of the OSI model.

Often a switch and a hub are combined and used according to a switching hub, and it helps in getting the right data packets to the right place.

What are the uses of Hubs?
These network hubs can be used in place of switches as they are not very expensive. Along with being cheap, they are used for many purposes.

In some special cases hub is used in place of network taps so that effective installation of protocol analyzer can be done.

  • Network hub is very efficient to receive very large traffic load which comes for cluster of computers.
  • These are very easy to use. Wherein if we had to use switch instead of hub then we have to configure switch settings first.
  • They can be used to establish a loop where it is necessary to provide a connection to end users in a presentation hall.
  • Hubs can be used for network extension because network hubs repeat each data packet forward whatever is sent to them.
  • Wherein hubs are more specifically used in small networks.

How to set up a Network Hub in your home?
If you have to set up a network hub in your home, then for this you have to do some important steps. Like first you have to bring an Internet connection from an ISP (Internet Service Provider). Once your Internet connection is installed, then you can connect your network hub with the modem and for this you can use a network cable (Cat5 or RJ-45).

After this, if you want, you can also connect another cable with the NIC (Network Interface Card) of your computer. You can also do this with your other computers and printers which are in your network. Whereas if you have a wireless network, you can use a wireless hub; Just ensure that there are as many wireless ports available in your hub as you have a connection.

Advantages of Hub

  • It can easily be extended in the entire distance of the network.
  • Using them does not affect the performance of the network much.
  • They are very cheap, so everyone can use them.
  • Many different media types can be easily connected with them.

Disadvantages of Hub

  • It does not have many advanced mechanisms such as collision detection and retransmission of packets.
  • They do not operate in Full Duplex Mode.
  • It cannot connect with other network architectures such as token ring and ethernet.
  • It cannot be used to filter information i.e. It passes packets to all connected segments.
  • There is no mechanism to reduce network traffic in this.

What are the applications of Hub?
Networking Hub is a very widely used networking connectivity device. It has many advantages compared to other connectivity devices. Let us try to know about some applications of Hub:

  • Hubs are used to create small Home Networks.
  • Hubs are used to monitor networks.
  • These Hubs are used for connectivity in many Organizations and Computer Labs.
  • Using this, it makes a device or peripheral available in the entire network.

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