networking basics are a must for those just starting out

Networking Basics

To compliment this site and all the online computer tutorials on offer I have setup a computer help forum where you can go to ask your questions.

Networking Basics


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What is a NIC?

NIC stands for "network interface card" a NIC is a layer 2 device because all network interface cards carry a unique code called a MAC address.

The MAC address is used to control data communication for the host on the network.

Ethernet uses MAC addresses that are 48 bits in length and expressed as 12 hexadecimal digits.

The first 6 digits identify the manufacturer or vendor. This is also known as (OUI) Organisational unique identifier. The remaining 6 represent the interface serial number.

MAC addresses are burned in to ROM & copied to RAM when the NIC initiates. The NIC uses the MAC address to determine if a message should be passed on to the upper layers of the OSI model. On an ethernet network all nodes must examine the MAC header.

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