IT Networking Components

Networking Components to keep you connected

“Data sharing essentials.”

The network operates by connecting computers and peripherals using various equipments, such as switches, routers, repeaters, bridges and firewalls.

At Millgate, we provide the most suitable networking solutions based on your requirements. This enables the devices that are connected to your network to communicate seamlessly with each other, saving time, money and hassle.

Our aim is to improve your company’s bottom line by enabling your company to increase productivity, cut business costs and improve security.


Specifically, routers and switches support:

Sharing applications

Speeding access to information

Enhancing customer service

Reducing operating costs

Improving security

Enabling remote connections

Here are some of the networking components we provide:

Switches are used to connect multiple devices on the same network within a building or campus. For example, a switch can connect your computers, printers and servers, creating a network of shared resources.

The switch, one aspect of your networking basics, would serve as a controller, allowing the various devices to share information and talk to each other. Through information sharing and resource allocation, switches save you money and increase productivity.

There are two basic types of switches to choose from as part of your networking basics: managed and unmanaged.

  • An unmanaged switch works out of the box and does not allow you to make changes. Home-networking equipment typically offers unmanaged switches.
  • A managed switch allows you access to program it. This provides greater flexibility to your networking basics because the switch can be monitored and adjusted locally or remotely to give you control over network traffic, and who has access to your network.

Routers, the second valuable component of your networking basics, are used to tie multiple networks together. For example, you would use a router to connect your networked computers to the Internet and thereby share an Internet connection among many users. The router will act as a dispatcher, choosing the best route for your information to travel so that you receive it quickly.

Routers analyse the data being sent over a network, change how it is packaged, and send it to another network, or over a different type of network. They connect your business to the outside world, protect your information from security threats, and can even decide which computers get priority over others.

Depending on your business and your networking plans, you can choose from routers that include different capabilities.

These can include networking basics such as:

  • Firewall Specialised software that examines incoming data and protects your business network against attacks
  • Virtual Private Network (VPN) A way to allow remote employees to safely access your network remotely
  • IP Phone network Combine your company's computer and telephone network, using voice and conferencing technology, to simplify and unify your communications

Since a signal loses strength as it passes along a cable, it is often necessary to boost the signal with a device called a repeater. The repeater electrically amplifies the signal it receives and rebroadcasts it. Repeaters can be separate devices or they can be incorporated into a concentrator. They are used when the total length of your network cable exceeds the standards set for the type of cable being used.

A good example of the use of repeaters would be in a local area network using a star topology with unshielded twisted-pair cabling. The length limit for unshielded twisted-pair cable is 100 meters. The most common configuration is for each workstation to be connected by twisted-pair cable to a multi-port active concentrator. The concentrator amplifies all the signals that pass through it allowing for the total length of cable on the network to exceed the 100-meter limit.

A bridge is a device that allows you to segment a large network into two smaller, more efficient networks. If you are adding to an older wiring scheme and want the new network to be up-to-date, a bridge can connect the two.

A bridge monitors the information traffic on both sides of the network so that it can pass packets of information to the correct location. Most bridges can "listen" to the network and automatically figure out the address of each computer on both sides of the bridge. The bridge can inspect each message and, if necessary, broadcast it on the other side of the network.

The bridge manages the traffic to maintain optimum performance on both sides of the network. You might say that the bridge is like a traffic cop at a busy intersection during rush hour. It keeps information flowing on both sides of the network, but it does not allow unnecessary traffic through. Bridges can be used to connect different types of cabling, or physical topologies. They must, however, be used between networks with the same protocol.

A firewall is a networking device that is installed at the entrance to a LAN when connecting a network together, particularly when connecting a private network to a public network, such as the Internet. It uses rules to filter traffic into and out of the private network, to protect the private network users and data from malevolent hackers.

Firewalls are either hardware or software, depending on their intended use. A firewall used to protect a network is a hardware device that should be installed in the network between the router and the network. Almost all hardware firewalls will have at least two ports, labelled "Trusted" and "Untrusted". These terms imply the true nature of the firewall's responsibility to the private network. The public network is connected to the untrusted network port, and the private network is connected to the trusted port.

Software firewalls are commonly included in modern workstation and server operating systems. They operate in a similar way as hardware firewalls, except that they filter traffic in and out of the machine itself. These software firewalls are typically unnoticed by machine users, and only need attention occasionally when an internet-connected application doesn’t work as expected. The software firewall should always be considered a "suspect" in such cases. The problem is easily resolved, by setting an exception rule in the firewall for the software that is attempting to communicate.

Want to know more? Call us on 0114 242 7310 and see how we can help you.