Full-duplex Ethernet

Ethernet switching gave rise to another advancement, full-duplex Ethernet. Full-duplex is a data communications term that refers to the ability to send and receive data at the same time.

Legacy Ethernet is half-duplex, meaning information can move in only one direction at a time. In a totally switched network, nodes only communicate with the switch and never directly with each other. Switched networks also employ either twisted pair or fiber optic cabling, both of which use separate conductors for sending and receiving data. In this type of environment, Ethernet stations can forgo the collision detection process and transmit at will, since they are the only potential devices that can access the medium. This allows end stations to transmit to the switch at the same time that the switch transmits to them, achieving a collision-free environment.