A computer topology actually mentions about the setup of various connected devices. In other words, we can also say the computer topology is the logical or physical organization of computers. There are different types of computer topologies, among which the four common types are bus, star, ring, and mesh. Bus topology is one of the most common types of computer topologies in which all the devices are connected with the help of a single cord or cable. When the signal is sent by a single computer, the information is been received by all the computers, however it is accepted by just one computer. In this type of topology, the signal bounces back when it arrives at the end of the cable. The repetition of a signal back and forth on an unterminated bus is named as ringing and in order to stop it terminators are attached on both sides of the segment.
The bus topology is considered to be very cheap and simple because it needs a short cord length and the chances of data collision are very less. Moreover, as the signals on the cord are bi-directional, hence they easily reach each and every node. Another type of computer topologies is of star topology in which all of the cords run from the computer to a key location where they are linked by ‘hub’. Every computer present in the star topology have to communicate with the hub, which then sends the message to all the computers or to just the goal computer. Generally, the hubs are classified as active and passive; the active hubs have the capability of regenerating the electrical signals. On the other hand, the passive hub could not regenerate the signals and also doesn’t demand electric power.
The star topology is thought to be very easy and quick. In addition, the failure of a single workstation does not influence whole of the network. Ring topology is the type of computer topologies in which every computer is linked to the next one, and the last computer is connected to the first one. In this way, a ring is formed and every computer retransmits the information received from the former one. However, the message moves in a single direction and none of the computer could monopolize the network. The ring topology also carries several disadvantages along with many advantages. Mesh topology is the type of computer topologies that connects all the devices with one another for fault tolerance. This type of computer topology is normally used in banks and financial institutions.
Nevertheless, as compared to other types of computer topologies, the mesh topology is considered to be quite expensive and difficult. Besides the main types of computer topologies, there is another type known as hybrid topology. This topology is actually a combination of two or even more topologies and the usage of hybrid topology helps to make a network well expandable. The network topologies are in fact the physical placement of wires and network nodes.