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Understanding Applications of Computer Networks

Patrick, a computer technician, is a dedicated writer who wishes to make the world better by informing individuals who seek more knowledge.

A network is a collection or set of computing devices connected to one another to establish communication and also share available resources. A network will comprise of software and hardware devices. You can have a network even if you are not connected to the Internet. Computer networks make it possible for people to transfer files from one place to another and to communicate taking the shortest time possible.

Computer network applications are network software applications that utilize the Internet or other network hardware infrastructure to perform useful functions for example file transfers within a network. They help us to transfer data from one point to another within the network.

There are 2 types of network applications:

  1. Pure network applications
  2. Standalone network application

(A) Pure Network Applications

These are applications created to be used in networks; using pure network applications on a single computer doesn't make sense. They help us to transfer data and communicate within a network. Such applications have a separate and distinct user interface that users must learn. Here are some examples.

Outlook Express

Outlook Express, an email program

Outlook Express, an email program

1. Email Programs

These allow users to type messages at their local nodes and then send them to someone on the network. It is a fast and easy way of transferring mail from one computer to another. Examples of electronic mail programs (clients) are:

  • Pegasus Mail
  • Outlook express
  • Eudora Windows mail
  • Fox mail
  • Opera
  • Poco mail
  • Mozilla Thunderbird
  • Windows mail

2. File Transfer Protocol (FTP)

This application facilitates the transfer of files from one computer to another, e.g., from a client to a server. There are two common processes involved in FTP

  • Downloading: This is the process of obtaining files from a server to a workstation or a client (for example when you download programs and music from a server).
  • Uploading: This is obtaining of files from a workstation to a server (for instance when you attach documents and upload them to a server, a good example being when you upload photos to Facebook).

Examples of FTP programs are:

  • FTP in Unix
  • FTP in Linux
  • FTP in Windows

File Transfer Protocol Process

File transfer protocol process

File transfer protocol process

3. Terminal Emulation (TELNET)

This allows a workstation to access the server for an application program. This enables you to control the server and communicate with other servers on the network. The workstation appears as a down terminal that is directly attached to the server. The user feels like he/she is using the server directly. TELNET enables PCs and workstations to function as dumb terminals in sessions with hosts on inter-networks.

4. Groupware

These applications are used to automate the administrative functions of a modern office for video conferencing and chatting. They facilitate the work of groups for increased productivity; they can be used to communicate, co-operate, coordinate, solve problems, compete, and negotiate.

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  • Video Conferencing: This is the process of conducting a conference between two or more participants at different sites by using computer networks to transmit audio and video data. For example, a point-to-point (two-person) video conferencing system works much like a video telephone. Each participant has a video camera, microphone, and speakers mounted on his or her computer. As the two participants speak to one another, their voices are carried over the network and delivered to the other speakers, and whatever images appear in front of the video camera appear in a window on the other participant’s monitor.
  • Chatting: This is the real-time communication between two users via computer. Once a chat has been initiated, either user can enter text by typing on the keyboard and the entered text will appear on the other user’s monitor. The two must be online for a chat to be initiated. Most networks and online services offer a chat feature which enables users to chat as they go on with their work.

(B) Stand Alone Applications

These are applications that run on stand-alone computers (computers not connected to any other). In order to extend their activity, they are rebuilt to run on network environments, e.g., word processors, spreadsheets, and database management systems. They function even when the computer is offline.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

Questions & Answers

Question: What is a standalone application?

Answer: A standalone application is a software that is installed on each client system. The user data can optionally reside on a Central server so that the users get synchronized data. Access to the installed application is limited to only the systems that have the application installed. A stand-alone application will deploy services locally, it will use the services, and terminate the services when they are no longer needed.

Question: What is a Network Protocol?

Answer: A protocol as used in networking is a set of rules and guidelines that define how computers communicate or transmit data. Rules are defined for each step and process during communication between two or more computers. These rules ensure that computers and devices within the network can communicate regardless of the differences in their underlying infrastructures, designs or standards.

Question: What is the role of network applications?

Answer: Network Applications enable people or even computers to communicate within a network. These applications use a client-server architecture, where the client and server are two computers connected to the network. The server is programmed to provide some service to the client.

The client is just a desktop, laptop or portable device like a smartphone. The server can be any of these, but in most cases, it is a computer in a data center running some specialized software.

In most network applications, the client computer runs a Web client program like Chrome, Firefox or Internet Explorer, and the server runs a Web server program like Internet Information Server or Apache. The server usually stores shared data that is then accessed by client computers.

© 2011 Patrick Kamau


fatxi on August 09, 2020:

i want how many network application

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on January 28, 2020:

Thanks sajad ahmad kuchey. I am happy to hear you learnt something out of this article. Thanks for the comment too.

sajad ahmad kuchey on January 27, 2020:

Thanks sir. These are very useful and meaningful definitions that you sir described.

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on December 08, 2019:

Thanks, FELICIAN ngemera, I am glad you learned something new. Keep reading to gain more.

FELICIAN ngemera on December 07, 2019:

It made me understood more about netwoks

.... on July 14, 2019:

Can you give some more applications?

Sukanta Saren on April 21, 2019:

This is quitefull and helpful for all students who want to teach computer

Thank you sir

Noor on April 19, 2019:

Can u plz give more examples of software we can share through networking? Can we share antivirus software also??

krupakar s v on April 15, 2019:

its very usefull bro ,thanks a lot

Effah Nelson on March 21, 2019:

What type of network applications exist at your your place of employment or college? Are local area networks involved? Wide area networks?

Nivi on January 04, 2019:

Very useful sir thank you sir

fahad on December 06, 2018:

its fantastic i got it what i wanted to get

shravya bk on October 25, 2018:

it will useful for us thanku sir

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on August 12, 2018:

Thanks, Abid, I am happy you got what you wanted to know about Applications of Computer Networks.

abid mushtaq on August 12, 2018:

Gives a very best answer, thankyou.

Bibek baniya on July 25, 2018:

Very usefull answer

praveen ram on July 17, 2018:

very useful command

ayuba peter on July 06, 2018:

it so important helpful and great

pretty on May 29, 2018:

the info is so helpful

Hillcrest student on February 20, 2018:

The information presented was very distributional

Sathya Priya.N on December 11, 2017:

It was very helpfull to me thank a lot

kevin on November 19, 2017:

thanks it was helpful

caroline nduku on November 14, 2017:

It has assisted me a lot in doing my research on networking.Thank you so much.

Bibek on November 11, 2017:

It helped me in doing my homework

Aparupa on November 11, 2017:

Very good information about networking thank you for the information was very easy to study for my exams

mukul agrawal on October 28, 2017:

thanks , that information is very useful.

and easy to understand.

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on October 09, 2017:

That it is very true Ikleemsy. Thanks for the visit.

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on October 09, 2017:

Thank you Samreenbegum, keep reading more of my work.

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on July 24, 2017:

Thanks a lot Mercia Chibi for appreciating my work. Keep reading and all the best.

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on July 03, 2017:

Thanks a lot, Mercia Chibi, I am glad you visited and enjoyed reading my articles. I will definitely try to write some more great articles.

Mercia Chibi on July 03, 2017:

This is quite useful and helpful easy to understand. Write more. Thank you

Pogba on June 24, 2017:

Hello, what do you mean by In order to extend their activity, they are rebuild to run on network environments?

suga on June 22, 2017:

thank you so much it is very usefull to me

muhammad umar on March 14, 2017:

its very usefull sir ,plz update further on this topic.

Justice M Dube on February 27, 2017:

thank you it was very usefull

Rohit N. Chavan on February 07, 2017:

thank you so much it is very helpful .........

Prasun Bose on December 01, 2016:

Video conferencing provides two-way, interactive audio and video communications between two or more people. Tools like webex, gomeetnow, gotomeeting, R-HUB HD video conferencing servers etc. are used for conducting video conferences.

Subrata Ghosh on September 13, 2016:

Thanks. It is a very useful articles.

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on August 18, 2016:

Thanks a lot Hirut for reading and commenting. Glad you found the much you wanted. Keep learning and stay safe.

Hirut Abebe on August 12, 2016:

Wow! It is so nice article. Especially for our Ethiopians it is clear and easily understandable. Thank you.

jagdesh on February 25, 2016:


reshma on February 24, 2016:


Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on January 12, 2016:

Thanks @tavga for the visit and comment. I am glad you found it useful.

tavga on January 11, 2016:

very good

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on November 06, 2015:

You are much welcome @Ujjawal

Ujjawal on October 22, 2015:

it really helped thanx

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on June 28, 2015:

@arun k arun I am glad that you managed to complete your assignment. Thanks for the comment.

arun k arun on June 27, 2015:

'more helpful to complete my assignment'

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on March 19, 2015:

tmasyorum I am glad you liked this post, I will check on how to add more explanations.

tmasyorum on March 08, 2015:

Yah this is vry usfl... But need little bit of explanation

pankaj on January 15, 2015:


mohini taur on December 25, 2014:

so intrusting.........

VISHALVAGH on November 21, 2014:

ITS AWESOME information i found here.

great job keep it up brother...!

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on October 23, 2014:

@aesta1 I am glad that you learnt something new from my hubs. I try to keep on writing to enlighten others.

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on October 15, 2014:

Your hub attracted my attention as I try to learn many of the terms I encounter online and have no clue about them. I understand the applications better now. Keep writing on this.

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on July 21, 2014:

Sorry for the disappointment

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on July 21, 2014:

You are welcome raj

raj on July 17, 2014:

Thank u

shara on June 25, 2014:

not much as expected

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on February 27, 2014:

Thanks a lot Zakia

Zakia on February 22, 2014:


Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on February 18, 2014:

@mani thank you a lot. glad you liked the post.

mani on February 18, 2014:


Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on December 15, 2013:

I will soon moshim sheikh

moshim sheikh on December 11, 2013:

sir can you provide some more applications with more explain.....

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on September 30, 2013:

Arthi, you are welcome. I will try to add some more materials on this hub. I am glad you liked it. Thanks for reading and commenting.

Arthi on September 28, 2013:

Thanks for such a useful information. and can you provide some more application sir?

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on August 18, 2013:

You are most welcome shireen. I am glad you liked the tutorial.

shireen on August 18, 2013:

thanks for such a useful information

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on July 28, 2013:

Thanks shivam, I will work on your request and provide you with some more applications of computer networks.

shivam on July 26, 2013:

sir can you provide some more applications and in brief

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on July 12, 2013:

Thanks sheetal for your compliments. I am grateful it was of help to you. Keep reading and remember to share with your friends.

sheetal on July 11, 2013:

it just fantastic i loved it for its better language and its example thank you so much..................................................

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on June 13, 2013:

Sakala Jb, thanks for visiting and leaving a comment. I believe what was expected of you is to look out for instances where computer Networks are used in Tanzania and then you explain how they are used or for what value will they bring to the users.

Sakala Jb on June 12, 2013:

I had a question which says "Identify application of computer network in Tanzania and how they are used?"

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on June 12, 2013:

maereg teferi, thank you for reading and commenting. I am glad you found something useful out of my work. Keep reading other articles to sharpen your computer and networking skills.

maereg teferi on June 12, 2013:

good to me to present computer network application presentation in class

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on March 03, 2013:

You are welcome iguidenetwork. I am glad you liked this hub. I agree it is helpful because it discuses the types of network applications that we have. Thanks iguidenetwork.

iguidenetwork from Austin, TX on March 01, 2013:

Very helpful article as they might be the ones I need in my work, especially the FTP. Voted up and useful.

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on January 06, 2013:

Thank you sri for reading and commenting. I am glad that you liked it.

sri on January 06, 2013:

very useful

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on August 08, 2012:

Thanks mughil for commenting. I will check on that issue of adding more explanations.

mughil on August 08, 2012:

more expl need

Patrick Kamau (author) from Nairobi, Kenya on October 05, 2011:

sorry jeramie, what could that be? I might help by writing about it.

jeramie on October 05, 2011:

...i cant get what i want,.......

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