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What is a Protocol?

A Protocol is a formal description of message formats and the rules that two or more systems must follow to exchange those messages. Protocols define procedures for negotiating connections, recovering from errors, and controlling traffic volumes. All protocols recognize that network errors occur, and they have the means to recover from them. Some will use an “acknowledgment” to indicate properly received messages. Others send a “negative” to indicate the need for retransmission, while still others depend on a time-out to trigger corrective action.



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