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Specification: Communication Methods
- Define both serial and parallel transmission methods and describe where they are used
- Consider the effect of distance on the transmission of data.
Baud, bit rate, bandwidth, latency
- Define these terms.
- Differentiate between baud and bit rate.
- Consider the relationship between bit rate and bandwidth.
Asynchronous data transmission
- Define asynchronous data transmission.
Start and stop bits
- Describe the purpose of start and stop bits in asynchronous data transmission.
Odd and even parity
- Explain the use of parity checks.
- Explain what is handshaking in the context of data transmission.
- Explain what is meant by a protocol in this context.
Baseband and Broadband
- Define each mode of network operation and describe where each is appropriate.
Local Area Networks & Wide Area Networks
- Contrast wide area and local area networks
Network adapter Topology (Bus & Star)
- Define the term topology.
- Differentiate between physical and logical network topologies
- Describe in general terms the operation of these networks.
- Compare the advantages and disadvantages of each.
- Candidates should be able to compare local area networking with standalone operation.
- Define the term and explain why local-area networks based on a bus topology are segmented.
Peer-to-peer networking & Server-based networking
- Explain these terms and describe situations where these might be used.
Thin client computing & Web services
- Compare and contrast thin client computing (software as a service, AJAX, Web 2.0, etc) vs rich client computing (client-server, peer-to-peer), web services as examples of ‘systems architectures’.
Wireless networking (Wi-Fi & Bluetooth)
- Radio-based LAN protocols for connecting mobile/portable devices.
- Explain the meaning of the term inter-networking.
Routers particularly, Gateways
- Define these and consider where and why they are used.
- Consider how routing is achieved across the Internet and how local area networks are connected to the Internet via gateways.
- Consider how a subnet mask is used to identify the network identifier part of an IP address.
- Be familiar with the role of MAC addresses in routing packets/frames.
- Distinguish between routable and non-routable IP addresses.
Server Side Scripting
Specification: Server-side scripting
Common Gateway Interface (CGI)
Server-side scripting – the basis of dynamic web page content.
Practical experience of writing simple server-side scripts.
Accessing data from a DBMS using server-side scripts.
Specification: Internet Security
- Packet filtering.
- Proxy Server.
- Private/Public key encryption.
Digital Signatures and Digital Certificates
- How they are obtained and used.
- Discuss worms, spam, phishing, pharming as well as viruses, also vulnerabilities that these exploit and how to address them through improved code quality, monitoring, protection.
Computer Security Procedures