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DTE – Data terminal equipment

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The DTE is a system that transforms user input into signals or converses received calls. This may also be referred to as tail circuits. A DTE system uses data Circuit-Ending Equipment (DCE). IBM also implemented the DTE / DCE classification.

A DTE is the data station’s functional unit, which acts as a data source or a data basket and provides the control mechanism for data communication in compliance with the link protocol.

Usually, the DTE unit is the terminal, and the DCE is a modem or a carrier-owned unit, or a computer that emulates a terminal. The data terminal equipment can consist of one component or a multi-piece interconnection subsystem performing all the required functions for users’ communication. A user communicates with the DTE, or the DTE may be the user, for example, with a human-computer interface.

DTE acronym – Data terminal equipment

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