Network Topology: Multipoint Topology & Point to Point

Point to point topology and multipoint topology

In this tutorial, we will discuss network topologies, point to point topology and multipoint topology with the help of proper diagrams and also the differences between the point to point and multipoint connection.

If you want to learn a specific sub-topic, then use the below table of content to directly jump on that part. 

Let’s get started, Happy learning!


What is a Connection?

When two or more devices are connected to each other through connecting links is called a computer network. A link between two connected devices is called a connection. Based on connection, the network topology is divided into two parts:

  • Point to Point Topology
  • Multipoint Topology

What is Point to Point Topology?

A point to point topology provides a dedicated link between two devices that connects them with each other. The entire capacity of the link is reserved for transmission between these two devices only. It is also known as a peer-to-peer connection or point to point network. 

The following diagram shows an example of point to point topology and there is one dedicated link that connects two devices with each other. One acts as a transmitter that sends the packet and the other as a receiver that receives the packet.

There is no need for address validation because only two devices are connected to each other. 

point to point network

What is Multipoint Topology?

It is also known as a multidrop, broadcast network or multipoint connection. In this network connection, more than two devices share a single link and channel capacity is also shared between multiple connected devices.

Let’s consider the following diagram to understand its concept more easily. Here is one mainframe computer and 5 workstations(A, B, C, D and E) that are connected to each other using a shared link.

Multipoint topology

A mainframe computer works as a transmitter, whereas workstations are receivers. When the Mainframe computer sends the packets through a communication link, all workstations (A, B, C, D and E) receive and process the packet one by one.

Firstly workstation A checks the address field of the packet with its address if it matches, then it keeps the packet and if not, it discards the packet. And in the same way, each workstation works if the packet matches with their address, they keep the packet and otherwise, they discard the packet.

Difference Between Point to Point and Multipoint Connection

Both point to point network and multipoint is used to make connections between network devices. But their working principle is different, and that’s why they differ from each other in many aspects.

Let’s compare these connections to see what is the difference between point to point and multipoint. 

Point to Point NetworkMultipoint Network
It is a connection between two devices.
It is a connection between more than two devices
It is also called a peer-to-peer connection.
It is also called a broadcast network or multidrop connection.
Channel capacity is reserved for only two connected devices.
Channel capacity is shared with multiple connected devices.
In this, only one transmitter and one receiver.
In this, one transmitter and multiple receivers.
It provides communication security and privacy because the channel is not shared and there are only two devices.
The communication is not secure and private because of the shared communication channel.

Have you enjoyed this tutorial on point to point topology and multipoint? Let me know in the comments. If you have any questions, feel free to ask in the comment section, I will be glad to hear from you.

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