how does buying foreclosed homes work?

i have been looking around on the internet at foreclosed homes. they say that they will be auctioned off. i was just wondering how buying one of these houses work. they are priced really low do they go up a lot in the auction? would i just go down to where the auction is and make bids or do i need to have a real estate agent do it? what if i was trying to buy a foreclosed home halfway across the country would i be able to do that? any info you have on foreclosed homes will be helpful. thanks

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