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In computer networking, out-of-band data is the data transferred through a stream that is independent from the main in-band data stream. An out-of-band data mechanism provides a conceptually independent channel, which allows any data sent via that mechanism to be kept separate from in-band data. The out-of-band data mechanism should be provided as an inherent characteristic of the data channel and transmission protocol, rather than requiring a separate channel and endpoints to be established. The term "out-of-band data" probably derives from out-of-band signaling, as used in the telecommunications industry.

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