Network Operating Systems

Network operating systems (also known as NOS) is an operating system which is designed for special tasks of linking computers and devices in to a local-area network (i.e. LAN).


A number of operating systems, such as the Mac OS and the UNIX, have such in built networking functions.

The name network operating system is typically held in reserve for that software which improves the fundamental operating system by accumulating networking characteristics.


Certain characters of Network Operating System are as follows:

  • It provides necessary operating system attributes such as different protocols, support for processors, support multi-processing of applications, automatic hardware detection etc.
  • It calculates the safety parameters such as authorization, authentication, logging on restrictions and controlling the access.
  • It provides file and directory services and user name
  • It provides web services, printing facility, back-ups and duplication services.
  • NOS carry Internetworking for example WAN ports and routing.
  • It helps in management of the user and maintains additional support for logoff and logon provides administration, system management, and remote access and examination tools along with graphical interfaces.
  • It has got the clustering capabilities; like the error understanding capability and elevated accessibility systems.
  • It offers the capacity to share devices, hardware and files all the way through the network.


Network Operating system has got 2 general divisions

  1. Local Area Network
  2. Wide Area Network

Local Area Network:

What is LAN?

The local area network (LAN) is the type of computer network which covers a little area, like groups of buildings, home, or office or a school.

  • The crucial character of LANs, it the great deal of data transfer rates, lesser area covered, and not having any necessity of the leased lines of telecommunication.
  • Wi-Fi and Ethernet (above unprotected warped pair of cable) are the couple of most widespread technologies used at present, but Token Ring, ARCNET and a lot of others was there in the past.

Case Study

  • First time local area network was put into practice in the year 1964 at the Livermore Laboratory to prop up the research on atomic weapons.
  • The use of local area network increase in the public corporations at the ending of 1970s and was brought into play to generate high-speed connections in between a number of great central computers in one place.

Features of Local Area Network

  • Even though the Ethernet is at the present the mostly used data connecting layer protocol and IP at the same time is used as a network layer protocol, a lot of diverse choices have been also in use, and a quantity of the still carries on to be accepted in a good number of places.
  • Lesser important local area networks usually contain one or more buttons connected to one another and in a lot of cases one of them are connected with a cable modem, DSL modem, or router for the Internet to access.
  • The superior local area networks are distinguished by the application of superfluous links with controls by the use of the spanning tree protocol to put a stop to the different loops to separate out traffic via VLANing and with their skills to administer reverse traffic types via excellence in the service.
  • It is possible to set up connections with one LAN to another LAN with the help of leased services, leased lines, or with the use of 'tunnels' all across the Internet by the use of the VPN technology.

Wide Area Network:

What is WAN?

Wide Area Network (or WAN) is the type computer network which encloses a broader population (i.e., any network which has contact links all across the national, regional, or metropolitan boundaries).

Features of WAN

  • Less officially it is the type of network which uses the public communications links and routers.
  • On the contrary to the campus area networks (CANs), local area networks (LANs), personal area networks (PANs) or metropolitan area networks (MANs) which are more often restricted to campus, buildings, rooms, or to a precise metropolitan spot (e.g., a capital of a state) respectively the WANs cover a more large population.
  • The Internet is the biggest and most renowned model of the WAN.
  • LANs and other types of networks can be connected together with the help of the WANs, so as to provide the facility to computers and users present in a certain area to be in touch with computers and users in any other different area.
  • A large number of WANs are generally designed for any specific organization and are confidential property of that organization.
  • While the other types of WANs are designed by Internet service providers which provides connections from the LAN of an organization to the Internet. Many a times the WANs are designed on the platform of leased lines. At every terminal of the leased line, a router is placed to connect it with the LAN on one surface and a core inside the WAN on the other surface.
  • These leased lines are most of the time very costly.
  • So, in place of using these leased lines, the lesser expensive packet switching or circuit switching techniques can also be adopted to design the WANs.
  • The transport and addressing functions are delivered by the Network protocols like the TCP/IP.
  • To improve the performance WAN or WAFS Optimization are also used in certain cases