Ethernet has been a relatively inexpensive, reasonably fast, and very popular LAN
technology for several decades. Ethernet has since become the most popular and most widely deployed network technology in the world. Many of the issues involved with Ethernet are common to many network technologies, and understanding how Ethernet addressed these issues can provide a foundation that will improve your understanding of networking in general.

The Ethernet standard has grown to encompass new technologies as computer
networking has matured. Specified in a standard, IEEE 802.3, an Ethernet LAN typically uses
coaxial cable or special grades of twisted pair wires.
Ethernet is also used in wireless LANs.
Ethernet uses the CSMA/CD access method to handle simultaneous demands.

The most commonly installed Ethernet systems are called 10BASE-T and provide transmission speeds up to 10 Mbps. Devices are connected to the cable and compete for access using a Carrier Sense Multiple Access with Collision Detection (CSMA/CD) protocol. Fast Ethernet or 100BASE-T
provides transmission speeds up to 100 megabits per second and is typically used for LAN
backbone systems, supporting workstations with 10BASE-T cards.

Gigabit Ethernet provides aneven higher level of backbone support at 1000 megabits per second (1 gigabit or 1 billion bits per second). 10-Gigabit Ethernet provides up to 10 billion bits per second.

This comprehensive tutorial includes a wide range of information on IEEE 802.3
standards, Topologies, CSMA/CD access methods, Wireless-LAN, and transmission speeds.



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