Definition and Benefits of Network Segmentation

Network Segmentation using Router and its Benefits

Traffic control and security are one of the major constraints while configuring a network. One best way to control traffic and provide traffic is to divide a network into segments. The division can be done by using hardware devices like hubs, switches and routers and software firewalls access control lists etc. Each segment in the network has different entity but share all resources available over the network.

Though network can be segmented using devices like hubs, bridges and switch with ease, these methods cannot provide benefits that a router can provide. The main advantages of using router are

a.            Separate broadcast domains

b.            Traffic control

c.             Shared bandwidth issues resolved

d.            Limitations on distance are reduced

e.            Less processing power

A. Separate broadcast domains:

The router acts as a dividing line between two or more segments. Router will not broadcast messages of one segment to enter into other segments. The devices in Local Area Network communicate through broadcast or multicast. Router will not allow these messages to enter into other broadcast domains.

B. Traffic control:

When many devices over the network want to share data at the same time, there is more of data collision. As broadcast traffic stays in the same segment, the chance of data collision has been reduced to a greater extent.

C. Shared bandwidth issues resolved:

Router separates a large network into smaller networks. Bandwidth is an entity that is shared among the devices. Let us assume a link with 100 Mbps is shared over a network with 100 devices, and then each device on average uses 1Mbps as it is shared. If the same network is divided into segments having 10 devices each, and then each device on average uses 10 Mbps using same 100 Mbps link.

D. Limitations on distance are reduced:

The length of the cables plays a key role in data transmission. As the length of the cable increases, there are more chances for data losses due to attenuation, interference etc. By making large networks into segments using routers, we can overcome the distance the limitations are reduced to a great extent.

E. Less processing power

The broadcasts must be processed by all the devices present in the network. Processing a broadcast message by a device consumes few cycles of CPU. This consumption affects processor efficiency and more consumes more power. With the use of the router, the broadcasts are limited to a particular segment. Hence, broadcasts are not forwarded to all the devices in the network increasing the overall efficiency of the network.

With the use of routers, a Network Administrator has access to more management tools. This eases the management of network

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