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Switching & Routing

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Switching & Routing

“Switching & Routing” are fundamental concepts in computer networking that govern how data packets are directed across a network. They are critical processes for enabling communication between devices and ensuring efficient data transmission.

Switching: Switching is the process of forwarding data packets from one device to another within a local area network (LAN). A network switch is a hardware device that operates at the data link layer of the OSI model. It uses MAC (Media Access Control) addresses to identify devices on the network and determines the appropriate path for data to reach its destination. Switching allows for direct and fast communication between devices within the same network segment, reducing network congestion and enhancing performance.

Routing: Routing, on the other hand, occurs at the network layer of the OSI model and is responsible for directing data packets between different networks (inter-network communication). Routers are network devices that use IP (Internet Protocol) addresses to identify different networks and determine the most efficient path for data to traverse from the source to the destination across the internet or wide area networks (WANs). Routing helps in finding the best path and avoiding traffic bottlenecks, ensuring that data packets reach their intended destinations accurately and timely.

In summary, switching handles data transmission within a local network, while routing manages data exchange between different networks, enabling seamless communication across the entire network infrastructure. These two processes work together to form the backbone of modern computer networking and the internet.


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