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The Seven Layer Model is Dead

Russ White writing of Packet Pushers comments:

This bit of history should resolve one question network engineers ask all the time: why doesn’t the seven layer model match the TCP/IP suite of protocols? The simple answer is: TCP/IP was designed around a four layer model (the DoD model), rather than the world famous seven layer model. The seven layer model was not designed to be the end-all model for network operations. Seven was not a magical number. The model was designed to allow adding more layers as needed, over time. Why haven’t we added more? More on that in a moment.

Russ brings up an interesting point with TCP/IP model not matching the OSI model directly, but is that the fault of a conceptual model? OSI teaches more of the reasoning behind making multiple layers and what they do. Collapsing the traditional model for the sake of making it look like TCP/IP is going to cause more harm than good.

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About the author

Tom Hollingsworth

Tom Hollingsworth is a networking professional, blogger, and speaker on advanced technology topics. He is also an organizer for networking and wireless for Tech Field Day.  His blog can be found at https://networkingnerd.net/

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  • […] I do see the appeal of this, however, agree with this author that “OSI teaches more of the reasoning behind making multiple layers and what they do. Collapsing the traditional model for the sake of making it look like TCP/IP is going to cause more harm than good.” – Tom Hillingsworth […]

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