The OSI Model

The OSI reference model was released in 1984 in an attempt to standardise networks and their interoperability with other networks. The OSI model uses a layered approach to help vendors build compatible products.

The OSI reference model is used in teaching the process of data communication on a network. It allows you to visualise the network functions that occur at each layer. It breaks the process of network communication into smaller parts, allowing multi-vendor development and support.

The OSI model contains seven layers, each layer documents the processes that occur at that particular layer within the framework.

Layer 7 – Application LayerLayer 6 – Presentation LayerLayer 5 – Session LayerLayer 4 – Transport LayerLayer 3 – Network LayerLayer 2 – Data Link LayerLayer 1 – Physical Layer

Layers 5-7 are referred to as Media layers, and layers 1-4 are referred to as Host layers. The application, presentation and session layers are concerned with application issues and the lower four layers deal with data transport issues.

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