The consensus problem is omnipresent and fundamental in multicomputer systems. Synchronization, communication , diagnosis, scheduling, reconnguration and termination of a computation can all be solved by consensus. We propose a single, universal consensus protocol that is capable of solving all of these consensus problems in a single pass through a set of computers. The protocol's capabilities may be tailored to fault models ranging from those used in system diagnosis to the Byzantine Generals Problem. We believe that the UNIversal CONsensus protocol (UNICON) will become a foundation for responsive (fault-tolerant, real-time) multicomputer systems.