ARCNET - Computer Definition
A popular LAN protocol developed by John Murphy at Datapoint Corporation in 1976, ARCNET was one of the first networking solutions for microcomputers.ARCNET employed coaxial cable to connect host computers, workstations, and peripherals through hubs in a star configuration. ARCNET employed a deterministic token passing bus medium access control (MAC) protocol, operated at signaling speeds up to 2.5 Mbps, and supported as many as 255 devices over link lengths up to 2,000 feet. More recent versions deliver 20 Mbps and 100 Mbps, although they have never been in great demand and are not widely available.ARCnet resembles, but does not adhere to, the IEEE 802.4 specification. ARCNET also is CamelCased as ARCnet. See also 802.4, CamelCase, coaxial cable, deterministic, IEEE, MAC, star, and token passing.
(Attached Resource Computer NETwork) The first local area network (LAN) introduced in 1968 by Datapoint Corporation. It connected up to 255 nodes in a star topology at 2.5 Mbits/sec over twisted pair or coax. A 20 Mbits/sec version was introduced in 1989. Although not as popular as Ethernet and Token Ring, many ARCNET networks were sold due to their lower-cost adapters. Gateways could connect ARCNET to mini and mainframe networks. ARCNET is a data link protocol and functioned at the data link and physical levels of the OSI model (1 and 2). It used the token passing access method. See data link protocol and OSI.