1. n. A ring network that allows unidirectional data transmission between data stations, by a token passing procedure, such that the transmitted data return to the transmitting station. 2. n. A network that uses a ring topology, in which tokens are passed in a circuit from node to node. A node that is ready to send can capture the token and insert data for transmission.
A LAN with a ring structure that uses token-passing to regulate traffic on the network and avoid collisions. On a token-ring network, the controlling computer generates a "token" that controls the right to transmit. This token is continuously passed from one node to the next around the network. When a node has information to transmit, it captures the token, sets its status to busy, and adds the message and the destination address. All other nodes continuously read the token to determine if they are the recipient of a message; if they are, they collect the token, extract the message, and return the token to the sender. The sender then removes the message and sets the token status to free, indicating that it can be used by the next node in sequence.