How the OSI model works

Essay by grimesyUniversity, Master's February 2005

download word file, 2 pages 3.0

I will try to explain how the OSI model works so that it

is easier to understand for those that have trouble with

the concept. Think of communications in terms of people.

Each person that you talk to is like a computer with its

own capacity to compute and / or calculate information.

If I speak directly with you and share information, that

is like a peer to peer network. There really isn't

any "hardware" at the physical layer involved to conduct

this activity unless you were a beautiful woman, in which

case I might have to use my hardware to communicate to you

my thoughts.

Needless to say, however, think of regular communications

between people as being similar to a wireless network.

It's communicating across a medium that we can't see. When

I speak to you on the phone though, we are still

communication over a phone network that involved telephone

lines, telephones, switches, etc.

We speak in analog

frequencies and the phone company takes care of the rest

to convert this communication to digital through a phone

switch and then converts it back to analog on your end to

relay it to your phone.

While speaking to each other might represent a peer-to-

peer network, if I were to ask you a question and you

didn't know the answer, you might ask someone else. Then,

that person might say "I don't know, but I will get you

the answer." This relaying of information down the line

to get ME an answer is similar to a computer network. The

problem here is that with humans the information shared

between hosts (people) can change from person to person.

That is why network protocols are very important as it

relates to packet transfer. Protocols define the rules so

that information...