The OSI (Open Systems Interconnect) Model is a concept used to describe the functions of a network. It is seperated into 7 layers, which each function independently. The seperation into layers helps two things: learning about networking, and creating hardware or software that interfaces with a network. It helps you to learn networking because it seperates a complex system into logical parts. It helps to create hardware or software because your device or program only has to work at one layer of the model. This also helps with scalability. The layers use peer-to-peer communication to pass data through the model.

The seven layers are:

At each layer, the data is encapsulated in a protocol data unit (PDU):

Some mnemonics to help remember the layers:

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