Networking / Beginners


Server computers are the lifeblood of any network. Servers provide the shared resources that network users crave, such as file storage, databases, e-mail, Web services, and so on. Choosing the equipment you use for your network's servers is one of the key decisions you'll make when you set up a network. In this section, I describe some of the various ways you can equip your network's servers.

Tip Only the smallest networks can do without at least one dedicated server computer. For a home network or a small office network with only a few computers, you can get away with true peer-to-peer networking. That's where each client computer shares its resources such as file storage or printers, and a dedicated server computer is not needed.

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