Data Terminal Equipment

<communications, hardware> (DTE) A device which acts as the source and/or destination of data and which controls the communication channel.

DTE includes terminals, computers, protocol converters, and multiplexors.

DTE is usually connected via an EIA-232 serial line to Data Communication Equipment (DCE), typically a modem.

It is necessary to distinguish these two types of device because their connectors must be wired differently if a "straight-through" cable (pin 1 to pin 1, pin 2 to pin 2 etc.) is to be used.

DTE should have a male connector and should transmit on pin three and receive on pin two.

It is a curious fact that many modems are actually "DTE" according to the original standard.

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