- Shopping Bag ( 0 items )
We encourage you to have a firm grasp of the internetworking principles surveyed in this chapter before you attempt to understand the complexities of the Cisco IOS. Internetworking is a term used to describe the collection of protocols and devices that interoperate on data networks. This chapter gives you the basic understanding of the subject; it is not meant to give you comprehensive coverage of the subject (which could take multiple books to cover completely). If you need a more extensive introduction to internetworking, a few good texts are cited in the "References" section at the end of this chapter.
When you finish this chapter, you should be comfortable with the OSI networking model and have a basic understanding of how bridges, switches, routers, and access servers work. Chapter 2, "The Basics of Device Configuration," introduces you to the basics of configuring a Cisco device.
The Open System Interconnection (OSI) reference model is a principle of internetworking that you must understand to appreciate the way Cisco devices operate. The OSIreference model is a seven-layer architectural model developed by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Telecommunications Union-Telecommunications (ITU-T). It is used universally to help individuals understand network functionality. The OSI reference model adds structure to the many complexities involved in the development of communications software. The development of communications software involves many tasks, including dealing with multiple types of applications, transmission strategies, and physical network properties. Without structure, communications software might be difficult to write, change, and support.
ISO is an international organization founded to promote cooperation in technological developments, particularly in the field of communications. ITU-T, on the other hand, is a global organization that drafts standards for all areas of international analog and digital communications. ITU-T deals with telecommunications standards.
The OSI reference model is divided into seven distinct layers. Each layer performs a specific, distinct task that helps communications systems operate. The layer operates according to a set of rules, which is called a protocol. In addition to following the rules of the protocol, each layer provides a set of services to the other layers in the model. The seven layers of the OSI reference model are the application, presentation, session, transport, network, data link, and physical layers, as shown in Figure I-1. In the following sections, we briefly review each layer, starting with the application layer.
The Application Layer
The application layer provides the interface to the communications system, which the user sees. Many common applications are used today in an internetwork environment, such as web browsers, File Transfer Protocol (FTP) clients, and electronic mail. An example of application layer communication is a web browser downloading a document from a web server. The web browser and server are peer applications on the application layer that communicate directly with each other for the retrieval of the document. They are unaware of the six lower layers of the OSI reference model, which are working to produce the necessary communications.
The Presentation Layer
The presentation layer deals with the syntax of data as it is being transferred between two communicating applications. The presentation layer provides a mechanism to convey the desired presentation of data between applications. Many people infer that the look and feel of the environment of a computer desktop, such as the way all the applications look and interact uniformly on a computer by Apple Computer, Inc., is an example of a presentation layer. In fact, this is not a presentation layer, but a series of applications using a common programmer's interface. One common presentation layer in use today is Abstract Syntax Notation One (ASN.1), which is used by protocols such as the Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) to represent the structure of objects in network management databases.
The Session Layer
The session layer allows two applications to synchronize their communications and exchange data. This layer breaks the communication between two systems into dialogue units and provides major and minor synchronization points during that communication. For example, a large distributed database transaction between multiple systems might use session layer protocols to ensure that the transaction is progressing at the same rate on each system.
The Transport Layer
The transport layer, Layer 4, is responsible for the transfer of data between two session layer entities. Multiple classes of transport layer protocols exist, from those that provide basic transfer mechanisms (such as unreliable services) to those that ensure that the sequence of data arriving at the destination is in the proper order, that multiplex multiple streams of data, that provide a flow control mechanism, and that ensure reliability.
As you will see in the next section, some network layer protocols, called connectionless protocols, do not guarantee that the data arrives at the destination in the order in which it was sent by the source. Some transport layers handle this by sequencing the data properly before handing it to the session layer. Multiplexing of data means that the transport layer can simultaneously handle multiple streams of data (which could be from different applications) between two systems. Flow control is a mechanism that the transport layer can use to regulate the amount of data sent from the source to the destination. Transport layer protocols often add reliability to a session by having the destination system send acknowledgments back to the source system as it receives data.
In this text, we discuss the three commonly used transport protocols: the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) that is used on the Internet, Novell's Streams Packet Exchange (SPX), and Apple's AppleTalk Transport Protocol (ATP).
The Network Layer
The network layer, which routes data from one system to another, provides addressing for use on the internetwork. The Internet Protocol (IP) defines the global addressing for the Internet; Novell defines proprietary addressing for the Internetwork Packet Exchange (IPX), its client/server architecture; and Apple's AppleTalk uses the Datagram Delivery Protocol (DDP) and proprietary addressing for communicating between its machines on the network layer. In later chapters, we explore the specifics of each of these types of network layer addresses.
Network layer protocols route data from the source to the destination and fall into one of two classes, connection-oriented or connectionless. Connection-oriented network layers route data in a manner similar to using a telephone. They begin communicating by placing a call or establishing a route from the source to the destination. They send data down the given route sequentially and then end the call or close the communication. Connectionless network protocols, which send data that has complete addressing information in each packet, operate like the postal system. Each letter, or packet, has a source and a destination address. Each intermediate post office, or network device, reads this addressing and makes a separate decision on how to route the data. The letter, or data, continues from one intermediate device to another until it reaches the destination. Connectionless network protocols do not guarantee that packets arrive at the destination in the same order in which they were sent. Transport protocols are responsible for the sequencing of the data into the proper order for connectionless network protocols.
The Data Link Layer
Layer 2, the data link layer, provides the connection from the physical network to the network layer, thereby enabling the reliable flow of data across the network. Ethernet, Fast Ethernet, Token Ring, Frame Relay, and Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM) are all Layer 2 protocols that are commonly used today. As you will see throughout this text, data link layer addressing is different from network layer addressing. Data link layer addresses are unique to each data link logical segment, while network layer addressing is used throughout the internetwork.
The Physical Layer
The first layer of the OSI reference model is the physical layer. The physical layer is concerned with the physical, electrical, and mechanical interfaces between two systems. The physical layer defines the properties of the network medium, such as fiber, twisted-pair copper, coaxial copper, satellite, and so on. Standard network interface types found on the physical layer include V35, RS-232C, RJ-11, RJ-45, AUI, and BNC connectors.
The Data Exchange Process
These seven layers all work together to provide a communications system. The communication occurs when a protocol on one system, which is located at a given layer of the model, communicates directly with its corresponding layer on another system. The application layer of a source system logically communicates with the application layer of the destination system. The presentation layer of the source system passes data to the presentation layer of the destination system. This communication occurs at each of the seven layers of the model.
This logical communication between corresponding layers of the protocol stack does not involve many different physical connections between the two communications systems. The information each protocol wants to send is encapsulated in the layer of protocol information beneath it. The encapsulation process produces a set of data called a packet.
Starting at the source, as shown in Figure 1-2, the application-specific data is encapsulated in the presentation layer information. To the presentation layer, the application data is generic data being presented. The presentation layer hands its data to the session layer, which attempts to keep the session synchronized. The session layer passes data to the transport layer, which transports the data from the source system to the destination system. The network layer adds routing and addressing information to the packet and passes it to the data link layer. The data link layer provides framing for the packet and the connection to the physical layer.
At Layer 1, as shown in the figure, the physical layer sends the data as bits across a medium, such as copper or fiber. The packet then traverses the destination network from Layer 1 to Layer 7. Each device along the way reads only the information necessary to get the data from the source to the destination. Each protocol de-encapsulates the packet data and reads the information sent by the corresponding layer on the source system.
As an example, consider what occurs when you open a Web page using a Web browser. Given a URL, such as www.telegis.net, your browser asks the TCP to open a reliable connection to the Web server that is located at www.telegis.net. (Many applications that use TCP skip the presentation and session layers, as we do in this example.) TCP then requests the network layer (IP) to route a packet from the source IP address to the destination IP address. The data link layer takes this IP packet and encapsulates it again for the particular type of data link leaving the source system, such as Ethernet. The physical layer carries the signal from the source system to the next system en route to the destination, such as a router...
|Ch. 1||Getting Started in Internetworking||9|
|Ch. 2||The Basics of Device Configuration||29|
|Ch. 3||The Basics of Device Interfaces||61|
|Ch. 4||TCP/IP Basics||105|
|Ch. 5||AppleTalk Basics||251|
|Ch. 6||IPX Basics||307|
|Ch. 7||Basic Administrative and Management Issues||349|
|Ch. 8||Comprehensive IOS Configuration for the ZIP Network||381|