Explain the purpose and responsibilities of each layer of the OSI model

Explain the purpose and responsibilities of each layer of the OSI model.

OSI Model

The Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) model describes seven layers that computer systems use to communicate over a network. It was the first standard model for network communications, adopted by all major computer and telecommunication companies in the early 1980s.

The OSI model helps users and operators of computer networks:

  • Determine the required hardware and software to build their network.
  • Understand and communicate the process followed by components communicating across a network.
  • Perform troubleshooting, by identifying which network layer is causing an issue and focusing efforts on that layer.
  • Create devices and software that can communicate with products from any other vendor, allowing open interoperability
  • Define which parts of the network their products should work with.
  • Communicate to users at which network layers their product operates – for example, only at the application layer, or across the stack.

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An upper layer refers to the layer just above another layer. The lower layer of the OSI model deals with data transport issues. The data link layer and the physical layer are implemented in hardware and software. The physical layer is mainly responsible for placing the information on the physical medium.

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