LAN vs WAN, Advantages and disadvantages of each Network

LAN, that stands for local area network, and WAN, that stands for wide area network, are 2 forms of networks that allow interconnectivity between computers. As the names suggest, LANs are for smaller, additionally localized networking — in a home, business, school, etc. — whereas WANs cowl larger areas, like cities, and even enable computers in several nations to attach. LANs are usually quicker and safer than WANs, however WANs entertain us with widespread connectivity. And whereas LANs tend to be in hand, controlled and managed in-house by the organization wherever they’re deployed, WANs usually need 2 or add to their constituent LANs to be connected over the public internet or via a private connection established by a third-party ISP (internet service provider) or telecommunications supplier.



LAN, which is an abbreviation of Local Area Network, may be considered a network covering a small region with the vary of 1-5 kilometer, just like the home, office, school, or a bunch of buildings wherever there are computers, servers, and devices like printers, projectors, scanners, and different storage parts. Fairly often the connections between servers are distributed by LAN cables, and end-devices communicate with one another through a wireless connection, that is, Wi-Fi. a number of the foremost common protocols for LAN are Token Ring and Fiber Distributed Data Interface (FDDI), whereas most of the wireless protocols in use these days are 802.11b, 802.11a, 802.11g, and 802.11n.

Ethernet LAN


WAN (Wide Area Network) may be considered as a network that covers a large region with the range of roughly 100-1000 kilometers, that is, any network whose communications link cross-regional, metropolitan, or national boundaries. Devices concerned are additional wide-ranging than those applied to the other networks, starting from routers to switches, firewalls modems then on. Corporations like FS or alternative worldwide organizations utilize WAN connection between their multiple branches by communication via microwave satellites. A number of the foremost common WAN protocols in use nowadays are X-25, Frame Relay, ISDN, Integrated Services Digital Network, and Point-to-Point Protocol (PPP).

Wan sa
Heyder89 / CC BY-SA 

Difference between LAN and WAN?

LAN and WAN are entirely different. Here I have enlisted several differences between LAN and WAN

Ethernet and token are technologies which are used in LANX.25 and Frame Relay like technologies are used in Wan for connectivity for longer distances.
It covers small network connectivity in a small range of 5-10 km.It covers broader distances such as ranging from cities to different countries.
It is cheaper because it can be developed using some cheap devices like Ethernet and router.It is much costly, as the connection has to build remotely.
It has private ownership.Its ownership can be public or private. It is because you use a third party ISP (internet service provider) for developing WAN.
LAN has higher speed than WANWAN is slower than LAN
It is more tolerant of faults and damages.It is less tolerant of fault and damages.
Its maintenance and implementation cost is low and its maintenance is easy.Its maintenance and implementation cost is higher and also maintenance is much difficult
It has a lesser propagation delay.It has a greater propagation delay.



Here are the few applications of the Local area network

  • One of the computers within a network is appointed as a server, that permits managing all different
  • LAN permits software to behold on on the server and which may be employed by all the users of the network.
  • It helps you to attach all the workstations within a building to allow them to communicate with one another regionally while not the necessity of internet
  • Helps to share devices and resources like printers and scanners
    Software developers may use local area network for sharing testing tools inside associate workplace or inside a mill with the assistance of the LAN Client-server model.


Here are few applications of WAN

  • The head of the department of the company workplace needs to share some information with their regional workplace associates, then they will share information by storing it at the centralized node.
  • Military operations would like an extremely secure network for communication. WAN is employed for this state of affairs.
  • Airlines and Railways reservation use WAN networks.
  • WAN permits workstations to connect regionally, which helps every node to speak with each other while not having any internet connectivity.


Here I have enlisted a few Advantages of LAN

  • RESOURCES SHARING: All the resources are hooked up to one network and if any PC wants any resources then it may be shared with the specified PC. Sorts of resources are the optical disk drive, printers, scanners, modems, and arduous Thereforethere’s no ought to purchase separate resources for every PC and it saves expenses.
  • Internet sharing: In offices, enterprises, and internet cafes, we will see that only one network connection is shared by all computers. This can be conjointly a kind of local area network technology within which the main net cable is hooked up to one server and distributed among the attached computers by the package.
  • CLIENT SERVER RELATIONSHIP: All the info from connected computers are often kept in one server. If any laptop (Client) desires information then that somebody will merely log in and access the info from the server. For instance movies and songs are often keep on the server and may be accessed by any licensed user (Client computer).
  • DATA SECURITY: Keeping information on the server is safer. And if you wish to alter or take away any information you’ll be able to bed simply on one server pc and different computers can access updated info. you’ll be able to conjointly provide access or revoke access to specific users so solely approved users can access the information within the network.


HERE I have enlisted few disadvantages of LAN

  • DISTANCE LIMITATION: Local Area networks are typically created in a building or near buildings and can’t cover the broader space.
  • SECURITY ISSUES: If the server doesn’t come upon properly and there’s a leak in security then unauthorized users will access the information conjointly.therefore there ought to be privacy policy and rules came upon properly on the server.


HERE I have enlisted few advantages of WAN

  • CENTRALIZED INFRASTRUCTURE: A WAN eliminates the requirement to shop for email or file servers for every workplace. Instead, you simply have to be compelled to start one at your head office’s centralized data  Fitting a WAN conjointly simplifies server management since you won’t have to be compelled to support, back-up, host, or physically shield many units. Also, fitting a WAN provides vital economies of scale by providing a central pool of IT resources the total company will faucet into.
  • EXTRA SECURITY LAYER: Setting up a WAN permits you to share sensitive information with all of your sites while not having to send the data over the web. Having your WAN cipher your information before you send it adds an additional layer of protection for any confidential material you will be transferring. With such a large amount of hackers out there simply dying to steal sensitive company information, a business wants all the protection it will get from network intrusions.
Audit3 / CC BY-SA 
  • BANDWIDTH: Corporate WANS typically use chartered lines rather than broadband connections to create the backbone of their networks. Victimization chartered lines offer many pluses for a corporation, as well as higher transfer speeds than your typical broadband connections. company WANS conjointly usually supplies unlimited monthly knowledge transfer limits, therefore you’ll be able to use these links the maximum amount as you prefer while not boosting prices. Improved communications not solely increase potency however conjointly boost productivity.


Here I have enlisted a few disadvantages of WAN

  • CAPITAL COST: WANs are complex and complicated, in order that they are rather expensive to line Obviously, the larger the WAN, the more expensive it’s to line up. One reason that the setup prices are high is that the ought to connect far-flung remote areas. However, by victimization public networks, you’ll create a WAN victimization simply software (SD-WAN), that reduces setup prices. confine mind additionally that the price/performance quantitative relation of WANs is healthier currently than a decade ago.
  • MAINTENANCE ISSUE: Maintaining a WAN may be a challenge, little question concerning Guaranteeing that your data center is going to be up and operative 24/7 is that the biggest maintenance challenge of all. Datacenter managers should be able to observe failures before they occur and scale back data center period of time the maximum amount as doable, despite the explanations. Period of time is expensive, in fact, a study done by informatics analysis estimates that medium and enormous businesses in North America lose the maximum amount as $100 million annually thereto and communication technology period of time.

What do you think?

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