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Respect Your Physical Layer

With so much of our work lives spent troubleshooting issues up and down the networking stack, we’ve started to take some things for granted. We almost never see issues at the session layer. We focus the most on the transport and network layers. But sometimes we have to remember all the layers of the stack and take a look at them properly.

Lee Badman is a well-respected wireless engineer. So he spends a lot of his time at the physical layer of the network. Usually, that expertise is with radio waves and coverage patterns. But every once in a while you need to take a look at the cables that hold everything together. As Sherlock Holmes once said, “Eliminate the impossible and whatever remains, though highly improbable, must be the truth.”

In Lee’s words:

The first of a handful of issues hit when I was gathering my tools. It would seem that my vintage 200? fish tape had decided it was tired of my abuse on rural plumbing projects and being put away wet as it was broken in ways I’ve never seen from a fish tape, just sitting there on the shelf. Hmmm- I also have a 50-footer, a cheap plastic thing. It’s a short run!

Read more at Lee’s Blog here: Respect Your Physical Layer

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