DTE Full Form is Data Terminal Equipments. DTEs are those instruments which are used in digital communication system either as sources or destinations for digital data. It generally converts user information into digital signals and converts the received signals into information. Simply, this RS-232C interface works as the terminal through which various information and signals are exchanged.
DTEs communicate with Data Circuit-terminating Equipments (DCEs). DTEs perform as a data sink. Its functions include clocking and error detection. Whereas error detection process ensures corruption-free data transmission, clocking process makes sure that the transmission rate of data is in accordance with the rate of the destination equipment. It is necessary to have a data communication equipment in order to connect a DTE to a communication link.
DTEs are type of end instrument. It can be a single equipment or multiple interconnected equipments. By the help of a serial port, a DTE generally uses serial transmission to transmit data. But parts and pieces of a DTE does not usually communicate with each other. 25 pin DTEs transmit on pin 2 and receive on pin 3, and 9 pin DTEs transmit on pin 3 and receive on pin 2. Printers, PCs, dumb terminals, file and application servers and routers are some common examples of DTE.