Typical Features of OSI Layer

A protocol that defines routing and addressing is considered to be a network layer, or Layer 3, protocol. OSI does define a unique Layer 3 protocol called Connectionless Network Services (CLNS), but, as usual with OSI protocols, you rarely see it in networks today. However, you will see many other protocols that perform the OSI Layer 3 functions of routing and addressing, such as the Internet Protocol (IP), Novell Internetwork Packet Exchange (IPX), or AppleTalk Dynamic Data Routing (DDR).

The network layer protocols have many similarities, regardless of what Layer 3 protocol is used. In this section, network layer (Layer 3) addressing is covered in enough depth to describe IP, IPX, and AppleTalk addresses. Also, now that data link layer and network layer addresses have been covered in this book, this section undertakes a comparison between the two.

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