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FIGURE 2.4 A physical star topology

The Ring Topology

A physical ring topology isn’t seen much in the computer-networking world. If you do see it, it’s usually in a wide area network (WAN) environment. In a physical ring topology, every network entity connects directly to only two other network entities (the one immediately preceding it and the one immediately following it). The complexity of the ring topology makes it a poor choice in most network environments. Figure 2.5 shows a physical ring network.

2.5 A physical ring topology

stream (such as the voltages, signal direction, and signal strength). Let’s take a quick look at some of the most popular:

■    NIC

■    Transceivers

■    Repeaters

■    Hubs

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