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Difference between LAN, MAN and WAN

  • Difficulty Level : Easy
  • Last Updated : 24 Dec, 2021

Prerequisite – Types of area networks – LAN, MAN, and WAN 

LAN stands for local area network. It is a group of network devices that allow communication between various connected devices. Private ownership has control over the local area network rather than the public. LAN has a short propagation delay than MAN as well as WAN. It covers smaller areas such as colleges, schools, hospitals, and so on. 

MAN stands for metropolitan area network. It covers a larger area than LAN such as small towns, cities, etc. MAN connects two or more computers that reside within the same or completely different cities. MAN is expensive and should or might not be owned by one organization. 

WAN stands for wide area network. It covers a large area than LAN as well as a MAN such as country/continent etc. WAN is expensive and should or might not be owned by one organization. PSTN or satellite medium is used for wide area networks. 
 

Difference between LAN, MAN and WAN

Difference between LAN, MAN, and WAN

Differences between LAN, MAN, and WAN

BasisLANMANWAN
Full-FormLAN stands for local area network.MAN stands for metropolitan area network.WAN stands for wide area network.
Geographic SpanOperates in small areas such as the same building or campus. Operates in large areas such as a city.Operates in larger areas such as country or continent.
OwnershipLAN’s ownership is private.MAN’s ownership can be private or public.While WAN also might not be owned by one organization.
Transmission SpeedThe transmission speed of a LAN is high.While the transmission speed of a MAN is average.Whereas the transmission speed of a WAN is low.
Propagation delayThe propagation delay is short in a LAN.There is a moderate propagation delay in a MAN.Whereas, there is a long propagation delay in a WAN.
CongestionThere is less congestion in LAN.While there is more congestion in MAN.Whereas there is more congestion than MAN in WAN.
Design & MaintenanceLAN’s design and maintenance are easy.While MAN’s design and maintenance are difficult than LAN.Whereas WAN’s design and maintenance are also difficult than LAN as well MAN.
Fault toleranceThere is more fault tolerance in LAN.While there is less fault tolerance.In WAN, there is also less fault tolerance.
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