The Role of Routing Protocols in Computer Networks

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The IT architecture in a given company or institution greatly influences the success of that company or institution. Essentially, IT architecture defines how computer networks tools and principles are employed in that institution. Thus, the architecture of computer networks may provide a conducive environment for working within the company as well without the company, such as connecting clients to the company’s services. This paper aims at investigating the different aspects of computer networks and how these can be manipulated for best results within the company. To achieve this, the paper will investigate the various networking principles, protocols and devices, highlighting their advantages and disadvantages so as to enable the company’s management to be well informed before overhauling the existing IT architecture. Since there are fast changes in computer networking (Sivachenduran 2018), this paper will strive to highlight the best methodologies in computer networks as well as the best devices for desirable outcomes.

Networking Principles

Purpose of Networking

The purpose of networking in an institution is to enable communication between the various devices used. Thus, the creation of a network ensures that these devices are interconnected in such a way that there is free sharing of information between them. This enables the employees of that institution to save on time and resources since information produced can be instantly accessed in other quarters as a result of networking.

Benefits of Networking

There are immense benefits that result from networking. Since networking means the interconnectedness of devices in an institution, these devices can be well managed at a central point thanks to networking. In this sense, security of information can be achieved since networking can allow for the use of a single password to control the devices. This means that sensitive information may not find itself in wrong hands. Also, Networking allows for a more efficient way of upgrading software in the devices involved. This reduces duplication of work when each device was to be updated individually. Networking also creates room for teleworking. In this way, employees can work from any part of the world instead of being restricted to specific brick and motor facilities. Another advantage of networking is the swift sharing of information. This leads to cutting costs of buying additional hardware such as hard disks and flash drives. This is because all the devices are synced, meaning that sharing of information is instant.

Resource Implication

Embracing networking in an institution comes at a cost. This is because there’s a need to purchase devices and cables to connect the various devices used in a company. However, the cost implication should not discourage networking since the company stands to benefit more.

Networking Topology

Computer network topology refers to the physical communication schemes used by connected devices on a network (Mitchell 2017). This refers to frameworks employed in interconnecting devices in a given network. Essentially, there are six common types of topologies in networking. These are, Bus, Ring, Star, Mesh, Tree and Wireless. Each of this kind of networking has its own advantages and disadvantages.


In a bus network, all hosts are usually connected to a shared medium through a single interface (Bonaventure 2011, p. 6). This means that when one hosts shares information, all the other hosts receive the network. This topology is however vulnerable when the single interface is cut, especially since it is in many cases a long cable. Thus, this topology is not advisable.


In ring topology, devices are connected by a single interface to the ring. Essentially, information flows through a single direction in the ring (Bonaventure 2011, p.7).This is similar to the bus topology since when the ring is cut at a given point, all other hosts cannot access the information.


A star topology involves a single node from which other hosts can be connected to through a single interface. This means that all the devices are connected to each other through the central node (Bonaventure 2011, p. 7). This type of topology is very admirable and should be considered in office organization. Its strongest point is that the central node can be used to control all the devices that can be attached to it.


A mesh topology involves the interconnection of pairs of host through interfaces. This allows the interconnection of all devices in an organization (Bonaventure 2011, p. 6). However, there is no central node that can control the devices.


A tree topology involves the interconnection of devices in a manner in which a host creates connection in a tree form. This means that other hosts stem from the first host, while consequent hosts stem from the second host, creating an interconnection. The problem of this topology is the failure of the first host.

Networking Protocol

A network protocol defines rules and conventions for communication between network devices (Mitchell 2018). In essence, networking protocols provide the mechanisms for which interconnected devices share information. This also includes rules that define how information is packaged and shared among the interconnected devices.

Purpose of Routed Protocols

The purpose of routed protocols is to manage the way data is transferred over a network. Since data transferred is always of varying nature, different protocols are employed in ensuring the safety of specific data types. Routed protocols also strive to speed up sharing of those data types in which they are involved.

Routed Protocols

Routed protocols can be sent over a routed network (Davis 2018). In networking, the choice of protocols to be employed is significant since different protocols manage different data types in the network. In the cases of a wireless network, information send via websites is channeled through the HTTP. Since this information is passing over a network, there is a need to protect it, thus the use of SSL so as to encrypt the data being transferred. FTP and TFTP are used when transferring files. Also, POP3 is used in the cases of transferring mail. Thus, it is important to consider these routed protocols in the creation of a network so as to ensure smooth transfer of data of all types (Cicnavi 2011).

Routing Protocols

Routing protocols allow routers to share information about remote networks dynamically and add this information to their routing tables automatically (Dey, Ahmed and Ahmmed 2015, p. 21). In essence, routing protocols determine the best path for each network. RIPv2 is in many cases very successful in calculating paths for networks. However, EIGRP utilizes limited bandwidth. In choosing routing protocols, it is essential to consider delays that may be caused by routers, bandwidth size as well as the type of network topology.


Hubs and Switches

So as to ensure that networking is successful in an institution, it is important to consider the purchase of devices that enable networking possible. An example of these devices is hubs. These are small network devices that allow for the connection of computers, thus creating a network. However, Switches are more desirable since they do not send data to all connected networks like the hubs. Instead, they send data to a specific destination port.

Bridges and Routers

Bridges are networking devices that connect to a network. Essentially, bridges are used to create subnets so as to reduce the amount of traffic from many hosts. Bridges ensure that data from various hosts does not overwhelm the network. On the other hand, routers are used in a network so as to connect to an internet service provider. Routers are essential in an institution since they connect it to the outside community through the internet.

Gateways and CSUs/DSUs

Gateways are also essential in a network since they allow for the translation of data from one format to another. In this sense, gateways are important in a network since they enable employees to work with various data formats thanks to their translation capabilities. On the other hand, CSUs and DSUs allow for compatibility of data between WAN and LAN.

Network Interface Cards and Modems

NICs (Network Interface Cards) allow for computers to connect to the created network. On the other hand, modems function to convert digital signals from a computer to analog signals that can be transferred over longer distances.

Communication and Bandwidth Requirements

Any modern business requires high speed internet to function effectively, and bandwidth provides the stage for fast internet to run wild (Huntley 2017). Since bandwidth is a necessary resource in networking, it is highly required that the bandwidth secured is enough not to cause sluggishness in the system. In that case, it important to put in consideration the number of devices connected in the network as well as the number of individuals who access the created network. Thus, 100 x 5 MBPS is desirable for a small institution or company.

Operating Principles of Networking Devices

While networking various devices in a given network, it is important to follow principles that ensure that those devices work to improve the network created and the activities involved rather than creating problems within he network. In essence, devices used should be able to use power efficiently. These devices should also conform to standard based communication protocols so as to ensure compatibility in the network. The verification of whether devices follow these principles is important since it allows for the choosing of devices which produce best results in the network.

Server Types and Networking Software

There are various types of servers whose functionality depends on the data type involved.

Proxy Server and Mail Server

The proxy servers are an intermediary between the client’s browser and the external server so as to filter content and requests. On the other hand, mail servers are used to store and send mail data (Beal 2011).

FTP Servers, Web Server and Database Server

FTP servers enable an institution to securely transfer files from one computer to another over the network. On the other hand, web servers are used to store website content as well as to enable the communication between computers and the internet. Database servers store large sets of data such as customer information.

Collaborative Server and Telnet Server

The collaborative servers enable employees to work in a virtual environment by bringing together the internet and the intranet in the institution. On the other hand, telnet servers make it possible for employees to access a host computer and manipulate it as if remotely (Beal 2011)

Networking Software

There are many types of networking software that enable an institution to connect all its devices into a central networks. These networking software are essential in the creation of a network in a given institution. An example is the Network Magic Pro created by Cisco Systems. Networking software can also play another role apart from connecting devices. An example of this is the Netribute Scanner that allows an institution to test its networking security.


It has been established that the networking in company setting is essential. This is because networking allows for sharing of information within the company. It has also been established that there are various criteria for creating a network. So as to create a network, one must understand its protocols and principles as well as the needed devices and software. These dimensions of networking interrelate for the provision of a quality network in an institution.


Dey, G.K., Ahmed, M.M. and Ahmmed, K.T. (2015). November. Performance analysis and redistribution among RIPv2, EIGRP & OSPF Routing Protocol. In Computer and Information Engineering (ICCIE), 2015 1st International Conference on (pp. 21-24). IEEE

Beal, V. (2017). Server Types. [Online] (Updated 10 February 2011) Available at <> [Accessed April 19, 2018]

Bonaventure, O., 2011. Computer Networking: Principles, Protocols, and Practice. The Saylor Foundation.

Cicnavi. (2011). Introduction to TCP/IP protocols. (Updated 2 December 2011). Available at <> [Accessed April 19, 2018]

Davis, D. (2018). Routing Protocols. (Updated 1 January 2018) Available at <> [Accessed April 19, 2018]

Huntley, M. (2018). Business Bandwidth How Much Do You Need (Updated 16 March 2017) Available at <> [Accessed April 19, 2018]

Mitchell, B. (2018). Network Protocols. (Updated 6 February 2018). Available at <> [Accessed April 19, 2018]

Mitchell, B. (2017). Types of Network Topology. (Updated 21 August 2017). Available at <> [Accessed April 19, 2018]

Sivachenduran, B. (2011). Computer Networking Technologies and Its Importance for Business. (Updated 22 June 2015) Available at <> [Accessed April 19, 2018]

September 04, 2023


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