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== SHA1 and SHA256 ==
The 'sha' part of the checksum file name stands for <u>S</u>ecure <u>H</u>ash <u>A</u>lgorithm. This algorithm is used to generate a particular code unique to the downloaded ISO image. '''sha1''' and '''sha256''' are different versions of the algorithm that you can use to do this. Whilst sha1 is the most commonly used version, sha256 is a later and more secure version. Which you decide to use is entirely your choice. '''However, if you are unsure, then it is recommended to use sha256'''.
The checksum file itself is just a text document that contains the code that should be generated by the sha1 or sha256 algorithm. If the code generated from the ISO file matches that contained in the checkum file, then the ISO is fine. Otherwise - if the two codes don't match - then it means that the ISO file has changed in some way, most likely due to being corrupted. You can think of it like two people using a secret password to identify who they are: If the visitor uses the wrong password, then something is obviously amiss!

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