The IEEE1394 interface, also known as FireWire, is more commonly associated with the attachment of peripheral devices, such as digital cameras or printers, than network connections. However, it is possible to create small networks with IEEE1394 cables. The IEEE1394 interface comes in a 4- or 6-pin version, both of which are shown in Figure 9

Figure 9 4-pin (left) and 6-pin (right) IEEE1394 (FireWire) connectors.

Universal Serial Bus (USB)

Universal Serial Bus (USB) ports are now an extremely common sight on both desktop and laptop computer systems. Like IEEE1394, USB is associated more with connecting consumer peripherals such as MP3 players and digital cameras than networking. However, many manufacturers now make wireless network cards that plug directly in to a USB port. Most desktop and laptop computers have between two and four USB ports, but USB hubs are available that provide additional ports if required.

There are a number of connectors associated with USB ports, but the two most popular are Type A and Type B. Type A connectors are the more common of the two and are the type used on PCs. Although many peripheral devices also use a Type A connector, an increasing number now use a Type B. Figure 10 shows a Type A connector (left) and a Type B connector (right).

Figure 10 Type A (left) and Type B (right) USB connectors.