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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    I am high school student looking to learn about networking for one of my independent projects. I asked my computers teacher (who used to teach networking) and he suggested finding a network simulator. I did some Googling and most I found are Linux based. I would prefer to work from Windows (as I don't have a ton of freedom with what I'm able to install on the school computers, and I'm not familiar with the Linux environment). I am open to using Cygwin but I don't know much about it. I built a computer for one of my earlier projects and buying a second hard drive is an option to run Linux natively on it. I was also looking at this book for a reference: http://www.amazon.com/Networking-Bib...86&sr=8-1#noop
    Any help would be much appreciated.

  2. #2
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    The best way to learn networks is to do them, hence the simulator.
    This link has a list of software that may be useful.
    Maybe a trip to the library and lots of reading?

    cheers, Paul

  3. #3
    New Lounger
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    You can run Linux from a CD, you don't have to install it on your PC. That being said, whether you run Linux or Windows or Mac software doesn;t matter if you really want to learn networking. I've been into computer networks for over 30 years. You should look at the "OSI Seven Layer Model" and start from the bottom. Buy a router that is capable of loading customer firmware such as DD-WRT. Download a copy of "wireshark" and start looking at how your computer communicates. As Paul says, you need to do networks to learn networks. If you start learning networks from the top down (application layer), it will be much harder because you don't know where the operating system stops and the network begins. If you start at the bottom (with cables or wireless) and work up, you are into the network right from the very start.

  4. #4
    New Lounger
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    As Steve L. says, start learning from the Physical Layer: cables, interfaces, pc architecture, etc. then build your way up. Eventually you'll learn about protocols and how things communicate once the data "leaves" the pc then returns. I started waaaay back when I could only get access to the local University via a 300 baud teletype machine. (First task: look up what 300 baud and teletype is.)

    You'll need a router and an extra pc (desktop preferred) that you can disassemble and reinstall at will. I'm not sure if you have the second pc available because I'd hate to see you have to disassemble your working primary pc and run into problems.

    As for Linux, if you want to review some info, check out linuxquestions. You can always dual boot from Windows to Linux if you need to. As for Linux references, IBM has a pretty good introduction for new learners.

    Never took the A+ exam but I believe that this is one of the entry level exams. Search for practice exams as you start getting experience with installing, removing, adding, and modifying your spare pc.

    Good Luck. Post if you have questions.
    \m/ ^_^ \m/

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