What exactly is a VLAN?
A virtual (or logical) LAN is a local area network with a definition that maps workstations on some other basis than geographic location (for example, by department, type of user, or primary application). The virtual LAN controller can change or add workstations and manage loadbalancing and bandwidth allocation more easily than with a physical picture of the LAN. Network management software keeps track of relating the virtual picture of the local area network with the actual physical picture.
VLANs are considered likely to be used with campus environment networks. Among companies likely to provide products with VLAN support are Cisco, Bay Networks, and 3Com.
There is a proposed VLAN standard, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers 802.10.
This was first published in April 2005