Network vs. Stand-Alone Computers

By John Williams

Computers are a power resource for many individuals and businesses.
i computer image by Angie Lingnau from

Network and stand-alone computers operate basically the same way. Most of the differences come with the setup of the computer as well as the management of the machine. Depending on what the circumstances are, depends on which one you should go with.


The operating system install is the same for the most part with the exception of setting up the network connection. On a stand-alone computer, the operating system automatically sets up the computer. On a network computer, the computer is joined to a domain and the administrator has to specify the domain name and join the computer.


Security on a network computer is different from a stand-alone computer because with network computers they have a domain security policy. This is a set of rules applied to all computers. Stand-alone computer have their own security management and firewall to help block intruders.


Benefits of having a stand-alone computer is that you are not bound by a separate administrator. This means the user can install programs and make all of their modifications. A benefit of having a network computer is that users do not have to manage items such as updates as these are taken care of by the administrator.