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What is a CRC?

A CRC (cyclic redundancy check) is a type of function that performs a mathematical calculation on a block of data and returns a number that represents the content and organization of that data. The CRC returns a number that uniquely identifies the data. CRC is the operation that generates a "fingerprint" for a block of data. The actual number, or fingerprint, that is used to identify the data is called a checksum.