Peer to Peer Networks: Complete Introduction

Peer to peer networks are growing in popularity because of the level of security offered. Many technicians are starting to be interested in using a peer to peer network model because it is more practical in developing network computer topologies.

For those of you who are struggling in the world of marketing and IT, of course, you are familiar with the term peer to peer. However, for the general public of course there are still many who wonder about what is meant by a peer to peer network.

Moreover, peer to peer network technology is still quite new. So it is natural that there are still many people who are so unfamiliar with this one technology term. In this article, Langit Automation will review peer to peer computer networks in more detail and in detail.

Table of Contents

What is a Peer to Peer Network?

what is peer to peer network

Peer to peer (P2P) network is a mode of computer network (can be composed of more than one computer) in a certain environment so that they can share with each other. Each computer will have the same position and also without the presence of central control from a dedicated server.

To create a P2P network you no longer need two computers or additional hubs and switches. Instead, you can directly use a switch or hub in the form of 1 UTP cable that is installed on the network card of each computer. In a peer to peer network, sharing resources and services is the most important thing.

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Data exchange that occurs between computers can also be done directly because there is no control or distribution of access rights. In terms of security, each computer user has full responsibility for each component of his own computer.

For a simple example, computer A in a peer to peer network wants to retrieve files or data from computer B. At that time, computer A will act as a server, so computer A can access files from computer B. Well, computer B at that time acting as a client.

On the other hand, if computer B wants to retrieve data from computer A or computer C, when accessing the file, computer B will act as a server. While computer A and computer C at that time acted as clients. Both of these functions, namely the server and the client, can be performed with computers that are on a p2p network at the same time.

In a peer to peer network topology, users of each computer network must be ready to manage computer resources, ranging from user names, sharing, access permissions, and so on. Each user has the responsibility to store the data contained on the computer.

The installation of a peer to peer network topology is quite cheap and easy to do. Because this peer-to-peer network topology only uses two computers that have a Network Interface Card (NIC) and are connected to the same network. Once the computer can be connected, users will be able to share data or information directly with other users and direct it.

Unfortunately, this network is not recommended for large scale. This is because network administration will become out of control. The more things that are shared, the more it has a big influence on computer performance.

History of Peer to Peer Network Development

p2p network development history

Although this peer to peer network has only become popular recently, the development of the network has started several decades ago. The concept of a P2P network began to emerge in the 1980s.

This network was only popular when Microsoft officially released the OS for workgroups. The main characteristic of P2P networks is that they do not have a central server to manage clients. However, the security system of this network is still considered quite low compared to other more complicated server methods.

In the same year, a distributed application called Usenet was launched. This application was created by Tom Truscott with his partner Jim Ellis in order to serve users by using newsgroups.

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At that time, they were not familiar with internet services to exchange access quickly. So they generally exchange files using a batch file system. The file is in the form of a file whose contents are data that is being processed or will be transmitted from beginning to end.

At that time, the P2P network could only exchange one data at a late night. This is a good time for a large country because DLD lines are low on users. As a result, the function of this application becomes undistributable.

Then, the first generation of peer to peer applications emerged, namely FidoNet. This application is quite successful and achieved a great level of popularity. This application created by Tom Jennings was released in 1984 to exchange messages between users of the Bulletin Board System or BBS which is certainly very diverse. So, FidoNet is arguably the originator of other p2p applications.

Over time, especially in the 1990s, a number of applications based on the peer to peer concept began to develop. For example, Kazaa, eDonkey, BitTorrent and so on. Even the peer to peer network system is not only used by home users but a number of large companies are also interested in this network.

The development of p2p technology is currently growing rapidly. In fact, these developments have also penetrated the financial world. This is marked by the emergence of the term P2PL (peer to peer lending). Many startup companies in the field of money lending are participating in using the p2p network. This system is expected to make it easier for people to borrow money.

Peer to Peer Network Characteristics

peer to peer network connections

As a new technology, peer to peer network has characteristics that make it quite superior. The characteristics possessed by this network include the following.

  • Do not have a computer as a dedicated server.
  • Each computer in this network is both a server and a partner.
  • No control over network security settings.
  • Does not require computer specifications with equivalent specifications to connect to a particular network.

In using a peer to peer network system, you no longer need a hub. This is because the computer has been connected directly to the UTP cable. Computers that have been connected no longer need to have similar specifications. Just add a network card to the computer to be able to be connected together.

Advantages of P2P Network

advantages of peer to peer network

Peer-to-peer topology has several advantages that make this network model so attractive. For information, here are some of the advantages offered by peer to peer networks:

1. Peer to Peer Network Easy to Install

One of the advantages offered by P2P networks is related to the network installation process. Peer-to-peer networks are relatively easy to install and construct. Because you will not need a lot of equipment when creating a p2p network topology.

2. Low Cost of Preparation

Another advantage offered by peer to peer networks is the relatively low cost of provision. In general, when compared to other types of network topologies, P2P connections are relatively cheaper in terms of financing.

This is because a peer to peer network does not require a server computer or other connection devices in the network. The lack of server computers and connection devices will reduce the cost of making a peer to peer topology on a computer network.

3. Network is Independent

This network topology has independent properties, so that each network computer can do different things without depending on servers or other connection devices such as switches, hubs, and so on.

4. Work on Other Computers Will Not Be Interrupted

Using a peer to peer network topology will not disrupt the work of other computers on the network. This is because each computer has saved its own files and these files can also be used with other computers.

Weaknesses of Peer to Peer Computer Networks

In addition to having advantages, peer to peer networks also have a number of disadvantages. For information, here are some of the weaknesses of the p2p network:

  • The security level of this type of network topology is considered less secure because each computer in the network has a different security system from each other.
  • The concept of data storage in a peer network topology belonging to each computer. Thus, when one of the computers on the network is disconnected, access to data is interrupted.
  • Since the data is spread across each device, of course, backups must be made on each computer.


Peer to peer computer networks are increasingly popular in use. In short, peer to peer network is a mode of computer network (can be composed of more than one computer) in a certain environment in order to share with each other.

Although only experiencing an increase in popularity with the development of the crypto world, P2P networks have begun to be developed several decades ago. Its development is increasingly rapid, making P2P increasingly used in various sectors of life.

Peer to peer networks certainly have many advantages for each user. Some of the advantages of p2pr networks are the installation process is very easy, efficient, inexpensive, flexible implementation, each computer can act as a client and server, and does not require an administrator to maintain the network.

Although it has advantages, peer to peer has disadvantages. Some of them are p2p performance is lower than client-server, because each computer must be able to manage the network and manage its applications independently.

That’s a complete discussion of peer to peer networks that you need to know. After reading this article, hopefully you can have a more complete and detailed understanding of the concept of peer-to-peer networks.

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