HP Deskjet 6840 Printer series - Hubs, switches, and routers

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Hubs, switches, and routers
On an Ethernet network, devices, such as computers and printers, are each

connected to a network




, or



Hubs, switches, and routers may look similar, but there are important differences:

• Hubs are passive. Other devices on the network plug into the hub in order to

communicate with one another. A hub does not manage the network.

• A switch allows devices on a network to communicate directly with one another

in a smooth and efficient manner. A switch monitors and directs network traffic

in order to allow each transmission the most possible bandwidth. By monitoring

network traffic, a switch minimizes collisions and maximizes speed.

• Routers primarily connect different networks (for example, connecting a home

network to the Internet). Routers are active. Routers have network

administration tools, such as




. A router can act as a


, while a hub and a switch cannot.