SHA-2 and TLS 1.2

I assume TLS 1.2 is a protocol for crytography, and SHA-2 is an advaced encryption algorithm.

Given that is SHA-2 a  required component of TLS 1.2

Is SHA-2 a component of any other  protocols (rx: TLS 1.0, 1.1)

Is there a difference between SHA-2 and SHA-256 ?  (I am think there is no difference, just want to check)

Thanks in advance
Anthony LuciaAsked:
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Dave BaldwinFixer of ProblemsCommented:
TLS (Transport Layer Security) is the successor to SSL and is used to encrypt transmissions over the network and the web.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transport_Layer_Security

SHA is Secure Hash Algorithm http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Secure_Hash_Algorithm .  SHA-256 is a part of SHA-2.

A HASH is a one-way algorithm and not a two way-encryption method.  SHA-256 is used in TLS 1.2 to create a 'random number', not to do the encryption.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transport_Layer_Security#TLS_1.2
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