A network interface controller (NIC) is a computer hardware component that links a computer to a computer network. It is also known as a network interface card, network adapter, LAN adapter, or physical network interface, among other designations.
Network interface controllers were first deployed on expansion cards that were inserted into a computer bus. Because of the Ethernet standard's low cost and widespread adoption, most contemporary computers include a network interface built into the motherboard or contained in a USB-connected dongle.
A network interface card (NIC) is a hardware component that connects a computer to a network. It is often a circuit board or chip. Modern NICs provide I/O interrupt, direct memory access (DMA) interfaces, data transmission, network traffic engineering, and partitioning support to computers.