Advanced Networking 1A: Introduction
Network Systems Specialist Career Pathway Course Units
Unit 1: Ports & Protocols
Throughout history, communication has always been on the forefront of progress. The ancient Romans developed roadways to connect parts of the empire and increase its influence. The Pony Express used a relay method of exchanging exhausted horses for rested horses to deliver messages more efficiently. The ability to communicate has shifted the landscape of the world, shaped cultures, and propelled civilization into the modern era. Computer networks have created the most connected world—far more than any other advancement. The ability to video chat with a friend on the other side of the world is both impressive and fascinating. How can information travel that quickly? What components are in place to make it work so seamlessly? We’ll explore these questions and many more, so let’s dive in!
Unit 2: The Fundamentals of Networking
The same fundamental structures create the foundation for networking, whether it be small-scale networks or global networks. We use foundational structures to organize, implement, and troubleshoot networks so that they can work seamlessly, no matter the scale that they are operating on. These networking standards are accepted around the world, and without this global adherence to the same standards, networks as we know them today wouldn’t exist. These models were created many years ago, but they haven’t lost their relevance as the basis for network transmission. There have been advancements and changes, but the core pieces of methodology remain consistent and resilient when offering efficient networks on every scale. So, since it looks like these networking models are here to stay, let’s jump in and learn about them!
Unit 3: Data & Cabling
Networks can be incredibly complex, requiring a vast amount of hardware and software working in concert to operate successfully. As we discussed in the last unit, we use the TCP/IP and OSI models to break networks down into different layers so that they can be better understood. In this unit, we’ll take a closer look at the physical layer so that we can understand the actual physical components that create the bases of networks and how these devices pass information. Let’s get to the bottom of things!
Unit 4: Types of Networks & Infrastructure
Can you imagine what our world would look like today without networks? Some networks are built physically, and some are organized virtually in a theoretical network structure. As technologies advance, the configurations of these networks become more autonomous with hardware that can make decisions for users dynamically. However, networks still require humans to address users’ needs by correctly configuring the devices for optimal functionality. Whether it is a smart fridge that orders groceries or a multi-million-dollar precision machine that needs schematics, both rely on networks to function. There are so many types of networks for a variety of needs, and we have only touched the surface!
Unit 5: Fundamental Networking Concepts & Principles
The further we get into networking and how it all works, the more important it is to know the difference between theory and application. If a friend told you everything you needed to know about rebuilding an engine and how to use the tools to do it, do you think you could? Networking concepts need to be understood, but it is important to consider the application of those concepts too. In this unit, we will discuss the configuration of the protocols that we have previously covered and some that we are just learning about. We’ll cover the basics of how things like websites are created and supported through servers. We’ll also configure some of the most fundamental protocols that are needed in networks. Let’s get practical!
Unit 6: Remote Access & VPNs
You’ve probably noticed that no two networks are the same—they are all complex and require a range of solutions! One need that is rapidly expanding is the requirement for remote access. As the global workforce trends towards remote work, networks are tasked with providing implementations that will offer the ability to work from anywhere at any time. However, creating and establishing a connection is just the beginning when setting up remote access. There are many security risks, and you must ensure that you take every step to eliminate the threats to networks that are being serviced.
Unit 7: Troubleshooting Networks & Connectivity
In networking, it is not a question of if there will be problems but when. There are physical parts that degrade over time, and all hardware will eventually fail. However, software can be an even bigger problem when it comes to the challenges that a network faces. A firewall might filter traffic that should be allowed, a software update might make a device incompatible with a network feature, and a lack of an update could render a device useless. Although you will undoubtedly face issues with networks, you can deal with them by using clear, concise troubleshooting techniques to handle the situations and act toward a solution. In this unit, we will cover a variety of troubleshooting techniques that will help you make decisions, act strategically, and find the issue. Let’s start solving problems!