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Internetwork Packet Exchange/Sequenced Packet Exchange (IPX/SPX) is a set of network protocols that provide packet switching and sequencing for small and large networks. IPX works at layer three of the Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) model and SPX works at layer 4.
IPX/SPX was designed as a Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) alternative. These protocols share similarities but have slight differences.
IPX/SPX is compatible with local area networks (LAN) or private networks and different communication protocol functions. For example, the Routing Information Protocol (RIP) function is used to route server information, which provides optimal data routing.
SPX is connection-oriented and used for routing information and connection-related functions. Like IP, IPX is connectionless and contains end-user data, such as IP addresses.