Local area network & Metropolitan area network

Local area network (LAN)
The term "local area network" is commonly used to describe a network of devices in a limited area (a house, office, building...). This type of network is usually capable of achieving high data transfer rate (up to 10 Gbps!) at low cost.

Some of the most popular LAN technologies are Ethernet, Token Ring and FDDI. Most LAN networks use TCP/IP to communicate. Twisted-pair cabling is usually used in a LAN.

Examples of this type of network are a small office network inside a single building or your home network.

Metropolitan area network (MAN)
The term „metropolitan area network“ is used to describe a network in a single metropolitan area, hence the name. This type of network is usually bigger than a LAN and smaller than a WAN. An example of this type of network would be a network that connects two company offices inside the same city.