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Debian GNU/Linux Reference Guide
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4.5.7 Sockets

The socket is similar to the named pipe (FIFO) and allows processes to exchange information. For the socket, those processes do not need to be running at the same time nor need to be the children of the same ancestor process. This is the endpoint for the inter process communication. The exchange of information may occur over the network between different hosts.

Debian GNU/Linux Reference Guide
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