Different Types of Networks

Stefan Bargan
3 min readMar 19, 2022

We have a variety of type of networks and both come with advantages and disadvantages. So far I’ve explained the most common types of networks and where are they needed. Though there are some disadvantages with a few networks as we might need a lot of cables for some.

PAN — Personal Area Network — When we mention a PAN network structure most end users will understand a room where we keep the computer, a printer, the router and other various devices that can be connected with each other. This network type is referred to only one end user and his workspace.

LAN — Local Area Network — Most people are able to think of internet cafes when it comes to LAN networks because everyone used to go to one for hours to play video games. This type for network is used when you have multiple computers within a room. A simple network and relatively cheap to create though this is dependable on the size of the network of course.

LAN Example in Packet Tracer

WAN — Wide Area Network — a WAN connects multiple LANs together, it might be used by governments or large businesses between multiple buildings or different floors in the same building. This network is common as it can be used for multiple rooms if they aren’t as close to one another. Having a router and a main cable can create a WAN and it won’t be that expensive to maintain this network.

MAN — Metropolitan Area Network — Used by government to connect computers around a whole city, that’s where the word metropolitan comes in from. Governments need to have control over a city so they’ll have everything connected together, such as cameras for example. Often Colleges and Universities will use a MAN to connect together differents parts of the campus.

WLAN — Wireless Local Area Network — A WLAN can be compared to a PAN as now most end users that decided to go into the technology world have devices with functionalities to connect via Wi-Fi to get rid of cables. This type of network is totally dependable on the functionality of the machines and if they can access the Wireless World. With this type of network we will need a really good connection and a strong router that can hold as many devices as possible.

VLAN — Virtual Local Area Network — A VLAN removes the idea of having a LAN as we can provide a data link connection for a subnet. A VLAN is mainly used as a broadcast domain and it has one or more Ethernet switches. This kind of network can be used for really tall buildings if the company doesn’t want to invest a lot in cables. Having everything virtually can save money on hardware (for the terminals as they won’t need a big hard drive for storage) but, the main problem is that this type of network needs a powerful server to run everything smoothly otherwise the network can become slow.

Thank you for reading my short explanation of the different types of networks.



Stefan Bargan

Pursuing MSc in Cybercrime & Security | Cybersecurity Writer | Threat Intelligence Analyst