Network Address Translation. A networking technology that allows multiple computers to share a single Internet connection.

A NAT box is any device running NAT software. It links a LAN to the Internet, essentially “translating” privately-addressed packets into publicly-addressed packets that can be sent back and forth across the Internet. As an added bonus, NAT boxes act like a firewall to computers on the LAN becuase they mask their actual IP addresses.


NetBios Enhanced User Interface. A simple and popular protocol for home networks with Windows PCs. A derivative of NetBIOS.


Network Basic Input Output System. A network protocol designed specifically to be easy-to-use on small LANs. It has often been extended and improved upon, most notably as Microsoft’s NetBEUI.


A group of two or more computers connected together.

There are countless ways to form a network, especially due to variables like topology and protocols. However, all networks can be placed into one of two categories based on their complexity and physical size: LAN or WAN. Home networks are considered LANs; the Internet is the largest example of a WAN.


Network Interface Card. A hardware device that allows a computer to connect to a network. Almost all NICs are based on some form of the Ethernet standard.


A computer or device attached to a network.