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NIC Examined

When using a NIC, you should consider the following:

MAC (Media Access Control) Address

Each NIC is physically encoded with a unique identifying address that is used to locate it on the network. This address is 48 bits (6 bytes) long.

System Resources

A NIC is configured to the computer with an IRQ, an I/O address and a DMA channel. A NIC commonly uses IRQ3, IRQ5 or IRQ10, and an I/O address of 300h.

Data Speed

The NIC must be compatible with the data speed of the network. The data transfer speed of a network is determined by several factors, including the cable media, the network topology and the network connectivity devices that are in use. For example an Ethernet network using Cat 5 attaches its workstations through hubs or switches, and runs at either 10Mbps or 100Mbps.

Next: Addressing the Network