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VLAN August 10, 2005

Posted by Coolguy in Networks.
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  • As networks have grown in size and complexity, many companies have turned to virtual local area networks (VLANs) to provide some way of structuring this growth logically
  • Basically, a VLAN is a collection of nodes that are grouped together in a single broadcast domain that is based on something other than physical location.
  • Here are some common reasons why a company might have VLANs:
  • Security – Separating systems that have sensitive data from the rest of the network decreases the chances that people will gain access to information they are not authorized to see.
  • Projects/Special applications – Managing a project or working with a specialized application can be simplified by the use of a VLAN that brings all of the required nodes together
  • Departments/Specific job types – Companies may want VLANs set up for departments that are heavy network users (such as multimedia or engineering), or a VLAN across departments that is dedicated to specific types of employees (such as managers or sales people).
  • Performance/Bandwidth – Careful monitoring of network use allows the network administrator to create VLANs that reduce the number of router hops and increase the apparent bandwidth for network users
  • Broadcasts/Traffic flow – Since a principle element of a VLAN is the fact that it does not pass broadcast traffic to nodes that are not part of the VLAN, it automatically reduces broadcasts. Access lists provide the network administrator with a way to control who sees what network traffic. An access list is a table the network administrator creates that lists which addresses have access to that network
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