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A protocol is a set of rules and guidelines for communicating data. Rules are defined for each step and process during communication between two or more computers. Networks have to follow these rules to successfully transmit data.
Similar to programming languages, protocols are based on specific rules and regulations for computing and are designed for efficiency. Each rule is defined in different terms and is assigned a unique name. Protocols specify the standards for communication and provide detailed information on processes involved in data transmission. Such processes include:
A single process can be handled by more than one protocol simultaneously. This coordination of protocols creates a protocol family.