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Definition: RS-232 is a telecommunications standard for connecting certain types of electronic equipment. In computer networking, RS-232 cables were commonly used to connect modems to the compatible serial ports of personal computers. So-called null modem cables could also be connected directly between the RS-232 ports of two computers to create a simple network interface suitable for transferring files.

Today, most uses of RS-232 in computer networking have been replaced by USB technology. Some computers and network routers possess RS-232 ports to support modem connections. RS-232 also continues to be used in some industrial devices, including newer fiber optic cable and wireless implementations.

Also Known As: Recommended Standard 232

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