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UNDERSTANDING THE OSI MODEL AND THE RELATIONSHIP WITH TCP/IP The Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) model is a benchmark tool for understanding information communications involving any two networked systems. It divides the communications processes into seven layers. Each layer both performs specific functions to support the layers above it and offers services to the layers below it. The three lowest layers center on passing traffic through the network to an end system. The top four layers get involved in the end system to complete the process. This presentation will provide you with an understanding of each of the seven layers, including their functions and their relationships to each other. This will provide you with a synopsis of the network process, which may then act as a framework for understanding the specifics of computer networking. Also this paper will explain how the 802 specifications expanded the OSI reference model by dividing the data link layer into two layers. Finally, this paper will draw comparisons between the theoretical OSI model and the functional TCP/IP model. Although TCP/IP has been put to use for network communications before the adoption of the OSI model, it supports the very same functions and features in a differently layered arrangement. The history of the growth of the OSI model is, for some reason, a little-known story. Much of the work on the design of OSI was actually done by a group at Honeywell Information Systems, headed by Mike Canepa, with Charlie Bachman as the principal technical member. This group was chartered, within Honeywell, with advanced product planning and with the design and development of prototype systems. In the early and middle '70s, the interest of Canepa's group was pr...