The rapid growth in the use of the internet by both individuals and businesses resulted in many organizations selling internet access to both individuals and businesses. These organizations are popularly known as ISPs (Internet service providers) or local hosts.
Two popular types of internet access are:
- Dial-up telephone Access
- Leased line access.
Most individuals use dial-up to access the facilities of an internet service provider. However, the businesses use leased lines to connect local area networks to the internet.
The figure illustrates the two most common methods of internet access. The leased (or direct) line is expensive and the line is dedicated to the exclusive use of the organization.
So it is possible to use the line for any length of time. On the other hand, for the dial-up connection, one has to ring up the number of the service provider’s computer and get a connection for accessing the internet.
The user is charged for the duration of the call. Normally the data transfer speed through the dial-up line is low.
It is normally convenient to connect a LAN to the Internet through a leased line than to have an individual dial-up connection. Because a LAN can provide support for numerous computers and there is always a high probability that one or more users are required access to the internet at any particular point in time.
In addition, a leased line provides immediate access from the internet to any application residing on the LAN, such as a web server, an FTP server, or an e-mail system. Thus a leased line connection facilitates bidirectional access to and from the internet.
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