Layer 2 network mapping gives IT and network professionals valuable information about how devices are physically connected. Layer 2 refers to the data link layer of the network. The Layer 2 protocol you’re likely most familiar with is Ethernet. This is how data moves across the physical links in your network. It’s how switches within your network talk to one another. Installing Layer 2 on your infrastructure gives you high-speed connectivity between devices.


Layer2 is the network layer used to transfer data between adjacent network nodes (a communication endpoint) in a wide area network or between nodes on the same local area network. Layer 2 services focus on the local delivery data frames between different devices on the same Local Area Network (LAN), the important aspect being transmitting protocol knowledge into the system in managing the physical layers errors & creating flow control as well as frame synchronisation. Layer 2 services include the following components:

Encapsulation of data packets into frames

 The process during which a lower-layer protocol receives data from a higher-layer protocol & places the data into the data portion of its frame.

Frame synchronisation

This part of Layer 2 services focuses on extracting incoming framed data for decoding using frame alignment signals.

Error & flow control via the LLC sublayer

The LLC sub-layer of Layer 2 services has the responsibility for synchronisation, flow control & error checking functions of the data link layer.

MAC addressing

Media Access Control (MAC) sublayer provides a control for accessing the transmission medium & moves data packets from one network interface card (NIC) to another.

LAN switching

Layer 2 services work faster than rooters because they look at a frame’s hardware addresses to decide where to forward or drop it.

Data packet scheduling

This part of Layer 2 services manages the sequence of network packets in transmitting & receiving queues of the protocol stack & network interface controller.

Virtual LAN

This is the part of Layer 2 services that focus on the broadcast domain that is partitioned & isolated in a computer network at the data link layer (OSI layer 2)


Here are some important applications of Layer 2 switches.

  • You can send a data frame from the source to the destination that is situated in the same VLAN without being physically connected.
  • Servers of IT companies can be put centrally in one place. The clients located at some other locations can access the data link layer without latency, which saves the server cost and time.
  • Companies also use it for internal communications by configuring the hosts on the same VLAN by using Layer 2 switches without any internet connection.
  • Software professionals also use these switches for sharing their tools by keeping them centrally at one server location.


Here are the pros/benefits of Layer2 Switching switches:

  • Helps to forward packets based on unique MAC addresses
  • Does not offer any setup or management
  • It can be quickly deployed at a lower cost
  • L2 switches flow accounting capabilities

Low latency and improved security


  • Layer2 is the process of using devices and MAC addresses on a LAN to segment a network.
  • Layer 2 switches perform the switching function to re-arrange the data frames from the source to its destination network.
  • Layer 2 switches are used to reduce traffic on the local network
  • The advantage of Layer 2 switches is that it helps to forward packets based on unique MAC addresses