Differences Between MAN and WAN | Know Everything

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The network of your company’s business is both its root and its backbone. Your company can be able to operate as safely, reliably, and productively as possible with a well-designed and optimized network. The two most common forms of networks are MAN and WAN.

A network is a set of wired computers (servers in a network and workstations) and devices (such as smartphones and printers) that can communicate with one another. Metropolitan area networks (MAN) and wide-area networks (WAN) are the two major categories of networks (WAN).

As they are the most common networks MAN and WAN, but do you know how they differ? This article will go into how each network works and how you can take the right one for your business or need between them. Again you can make them work together if necessary to keep the company going smoothly.


Differences Between Metropolitan Area Networks and Wide Area Networks

Before getting deep inside, we suggest you learn about LAN and WAN.

As the term suggests, MAN (Metropolitan Area Network) is commonly used in cities and other areas with a radius of 50-60 kilometers. MANs are high-speed link networks that combine many local area networks into a single wide network with a single bridge. Backbone lines, which are typically formed via optical fiber and router to improve data processing speed, are the bridge.

Simply placed, a MAN is a set of one or more LAN networks that are linked together by a single cable like optical or coaxial cable connectors. In MAN, networking protocols such as RS-232, X-25, Frame Relay, and ATM are commonly used.

On the other hand, A WAN (Wide Area Network) is a computer network that encompasses a vast geographic area with a radius of 100-1000 kilometers, or any network whose communications links span urban, state, or national boundaries. The devices used are more varied than those seen with the other forms, varying from routers to switches, firewalls, modems, and other devices.

WAN connections are used by companies like FS and other global organizations to communicate with their different branches through microwave satellites. Frame Relay, X-25, Integrated Services Digital Network, or ISDN, and Point-to-Point Protocol, or PPP, are some of the most widely used WAN protocols today. These protocols are very important because of the cybersecurity threats of today’s era.

A Metropolitan Area Network (MAN) is a network that is wider than a local area network (LAN). It often encompasses several cities or towns. It is very costly, and a single company will not be able to afford it.

On the other hand, a wide area network (WAN) is much broader than a local area network (LAN) or a metropolitan area network (MAN). It often encompasses several countries or regions. It is very costly, and a single company will not be able to afford it. The WAN is managed via satellite.


The ownership of MAN can be private or public just like your PC network changing to private or public. The ownership of WAN can be private or public.


MAN has a higher transfer speed than WAN. That means WAN’s transmission speed is low.

Propagation Delay

The Propagation Delay of MAN is moderate. Whereas there is a longer propagation delay in WAN.


The congestion of WAN is higher than that of MAN.


The fault tolerance of WAN is minimum than other area networks. So the fault tolerance of MAN is higher than that of WAN.

Design & Maintenance

WAN design and maintenance are complicated and more expensive than MAN. Security of the networks should be imposed properly.


The bandwidth of MAN is moderate but in the case of WAN, the bandwidth is high.

Data Rates

MAN gives moderate date rates. On the other hand. WAN supplies low data rates. Using an ethernet cable is very common in these types of networks.

Noise and Error

Less noise and mistakes are found in MAN relative to WAN.

Installation Cost

In MAN, the installation cost is moderate. But in WAN the installation cost is very high.


The most known representation of MAN is the cable TV network accessible in several cities. The MAN network shall be implemented by various government agencies or private companies for inter-connectivity between the offices of their departments located in separate locations or districts.

WAN networks or the internet are used by military forces, rail reservations, and satellite-mode airlines, as these activities require a highly secure network for connectivity. Wireless or wired both can be implemented.


MANs and WANs are close in several respects, but they still have some significant variations, as discussed above. If your work is confined in several cities, then a MAN is likely all you’ll need.

However, whether you have several locations in various geographic locations or a large number of remote users, you’ll need a WAN to hold all and everyone connected. But the security essentials should be one of the most important priorities.

Working with the right IT partner is the most crucial factor to remember when building or updating the network. If you’re setting up or handling a WAN, this is particularly crucial.

You can save a lot of time and money by working with a team that has expertise supporting various sites and interconnected networks. If you are interested to know how you can transform your coaxial cable to an ethernet cable, you read this article.

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