What is Network Bridge

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Computer Networking Computer Networking

What is Network Bridge

A network bridge is a computer networking device that creates a single aggregate network from multiple communication networks or network segments.

A network bridge is a device that divides a network into segments. Each segment represent a separate collision domain, so the number of collisions on the network is reduced. Each collision domain has its own separate bandwidth, so a bridge also improves the network performance.

A bridge works at the Data link layer (Layer 2) of the OSI model. It inspects incoming traffic and decide whether to forward it or filter it. Each incoming Ethernet frame is inspected for destination MAC address. If the bridge determines that the destination host is on another segment of the network, it forwards the frame to that segment.

Why Need Network Bridge

A network bridge joins two separate computer networks. The network bridge enables communication between the two networks and provides a way for them to work as a single network. Bridges extend local area networks to cover a larger physical area than the LAN can reach. Bridges are similar to — but more intelligent than — simple repeaters, which also extend signal range.

How Network Bridges Work

Bridge devices inspect incoming network traffic and determine whether to forward or discard the traffic according to its intended destination. An Ethernet bridge, for example, inspects each incoming Ethernet frame including the source and destination MAC addresses — and sometimes the frame size — when it processes individual forwarding decisions. Bridge devices operate at the data-link layer of the OSI model.

Types of Bridges

There are two types of Bridge they are given below;

Transparent Bridges: These are the bridge in which the stations are completely unaware of the bridge’s existence i.e. whether or not a bridge is added or deleted from the network, reconfiguration of the stations is unnecessary. These bridges make use of two processes i.e. bridge forwarding and bridge learning.

Source Routing Bridges: In these bridges, routing operation is performed by source station and the frame specifies which route to follow. The hot can discover frame by sending a special frame called discovery frame, which spreads through the entire network using all possible paths to destination.


Computer Networking Computer Networking

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