Hop count is the number of routers (number of hops) from the source router through which data must pass to reach the destination network.
In above lab topology, techsfair.com.R1 is the Source Network router and techsfair.com.R4 is the Destination Network router. From Source Network Router, an IP data-gram must hop three routers to reach the Destination Network, which are techsfair.com.R2, techsfair.com.R3, and techsfair.com.R4.
Below show command “show ip route” output (from techsfair.com.R1) shows the metric of RIP (Hop count) as 3.
From above output, [120/3] shows 120 is the default Administrative Distance of RIP (Routing Information Protocol) and 3 is the metric (Hop Count) of RIP (Routing Information Protocol) for above topology.
RIP (Routing Information Protocol) selects the best path to a Destination Network based only on the number of hops to the destination network. If you have multiple paths with different bandwidth to the destination network, then RIP’s best path calculation may become wrong.