Telnet is a network protocol established in 1974, which is based on a character-oriented data exchange via a TCP connection. It is represented on all common operating systems and therefore also enables the exchange between different operating systems.

The Telnet client establishes an unencrypted connection to a remote computer. An encrypted connection can be established using SSH. This allows opening a command line on a remote computer. Before the connection can be established, the user is prompted for a username and password combination. The password is then passed during the connection establishment. If the data allows access, the Telnet protocol can be initiated.

Once a connection is established between the Telnet client and Telnet server, text-based input is transmitted. The remote computer then sends back output from a program in text form. Today, Telnet is primarily used for connection testing due to security vulnerabilities. However, Telnet is still used for database queries and remote configuration.

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