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Because Monero has been updated over the years, some of the documentation about Monero no longer applies in the current version. As a result, I am not sure if the information i read is outdated.

Therefore I wonder, what is the difference between ring signatures and RingCT? Do ring signatures exist only inside RingCT, or is it its own privacy feature?

Please, explain it like I'm five.

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...what is the difference between ring signatures and RingCT?

RingCT is really just an umbrella term that encompasses Ring signatures and Confidential Transactions, which they themselves are then are made up of other components, such as MLSAG/CLSAG signatures, Bulletproof range-proofs and Pedersen commitments etc etc, which in turn are made from other things such as curve points.

Do ring signatures exist only inside RingCT

In Monero, yes. As mentioned above, RingCT is the umbrella term used here for which ring signatures fall under.

...some of the documentation about Monero no longer applies in its current version

The most up-to-date documentation is the code, closely followed by Zero to Monero [pdf] and papers published by the MRL (Monero Research Lab).

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Well, just as a conceptual clarification for future readers:

CT (Confidential Transaction) -> Is intended to hide the amount of XMR sent in a transaction.

Ring Signature -> Is intended to hide the sender of a transaction.

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    Wrong. RingCT is the transaction protocol, an umbrella term for Ring signatures and Confidential Transactions. Thus RingCT hides the sender, receiver and amount. The Ring signature is just one part of RingCT.
    – jtgrassie
    Mar 1 at 2:50
  • I didn't know that RingCT was just the name of the protocol, thanks for the correction. I edited the answer just to separate the intent of those parts of the protocol :)
    – 3af2
    Mar 1 at 2:55

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