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What is Layer 7?

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what is layer 7

To provide insight into the networking industry, run a “What Is” blog series. Take a look at the latest edition; What is Layer 7?

What is Layer 7?

The Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) model was designed by the International Standards Organisation (ISO) and defines a conceptual networking framework that implements protocols in seven layers. It helps us to understand communication interactions that are happening. Layer 7 refers to the uppermost layer of the OSI model. Known as the “application layer”, it supports end-user processes and applications.

What are Layer 7 Analytics?

Another common phrase related to Layer 7 is “Layer 7 Analytics”. This refers to a system’s ability to identify and report on application usage. By identifying and reporting on application usage, network administrators can improve network management by better understanding how it is being used, and optimising performance based on this. For example, if you can see that employees are using the network largely to support social media activities, such as YouTube, and this is slowing overall performance of the network by taking up unnecessary bandwidth, then you could take action to limit this type of application usage – keeping bandwidth available for business critical applications instead.

In the context of products, Cradlepoint recently released a new NetCloud Manager Enterprise tier which includes WAN traffic application visibility and control. Key functionality includes the automatic identification of thousands of applications per network, group, site and individual client. This allows administrators to monitor, troubleshoot and analyse application traffic patterns, behaviour and usage per WAN interface so that network performance can be optimised.

For more information on the all-new Enterprise tier of Cradlepoint NetCloud Manager, please follow the link provided to our product page. For more information on the Open Standards Interconnection (OSI) model, please follow this link to the ISO website.

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