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Client server architecture sometimes called two-tier architecture is network architecture in which each computer or process on the network is either a client or a server.Client server provides a versatile architecture that allows insertion of new technology more readily than earlier software designs. Servers are powerful computers where users run applications. Clients on the other hand depend on servers for resources. Client is the browser for example internet explorer,Mozilla, Netscape Navigator,Mozilla Firefox and opera.These browsers interact with the servers using protocols such as HTTP, FTP, SMTP and Telnet protocol which are brought under one roof by World Wide Web. In my essay I will look at the types of client server architectures, advantages, management controls and management structures (Client-server architecture, 2010).
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Client server architecture is divided into two; two -tier architecture and three- tier architecture. In two tier architecture, the user interface is placed at users' desktop environment and the database management system services to the many clients. Information breakdown is split into two i.e. the user system interface environment and the database management server environment. Three- tier architecture on the other hand is used to deal with the disadvantages of the two tier architecture. In this architecture a middleware is used between the user system interface client environment and the database management system server environment. These middleware are implemented in different ways such as transactions processing monitors, message servers and application servers.Three-tier with message server, messages are processed and arranged asynchronously. These messages have titles that include priority information, address and identification number. Three-tier with an application server allows the main body of an application to run on a shared host rather than in the user system interface client environment. Middleware performs the function of data queuingapplication execution and database staging, adding schedules and prioritizing work progress. This architecture is used to improve performance for large number of users and improve flexibility when compared to the two tier approach. This architecture has a disadvantage of using development environment is more difficult as compared to the two tier architecture. (Client Server Architecture - A basic Introduction, May 2002)
Unlike other models data management is easier because the files are in one location. This allows fast backupsand efficient error management. There are multiple levels of permissions which can prevent users from doing damage to files. Also in client server architecture, network performance isfast because the server hardware serves requests from clients quickly. All the data are processed on the server, and only theresults are returned to the client who reduces the amount of network traffic between the server and the client machine. All data and application are on the server making thin architecture to allow a quick replacement on defect clients unlike in peer to peer model. Many applications have a high security standard which is satisfied in client server architecture unlike in peer to peer solutions. Management on the machine console which on other systems can be very unreliable where a server is in an awkward location but in client server approach you can choose to run the client on the server machine.
Scalability in client server architecture exists in two ways either horizontally or vertically. Horizontal scaling means adding or removing client workplaces with only a small performance impact while vertical scaling means transferring to a larger and a faster server machine. Maintainability is the likelihood of performing a repair within a given period of time. This means that it events the ease and speed with which a client server architecture can be restored back to normal after a failure has been detected. Interoperability is the ability of a client server system to work together with other systems or product without unusual effort on the part of the customer. Usability in the client server approach is making web sites easy and friendly to use to the end users without making them undergo exceptional training on how to use it. The users relate what he wants to do on the web page with what he or she knows. As the results of usability become accessible this gives rise to approaches like ecommerce which generates sales and other business dealings (Client server software architecture - and overview, 2005).
Management controls that are maintained over client server network as opposed to other systems include; checking, control and other purposes are accessed by a supervision protocol connecting with the managed server, client verification which permits control of manageable functionality, client side access to the management function which is provided by an Is ode and management tools built over by APIs. Client server management architecture can therefore be used in many ways including , opening and ending servers,examining message lines, status and deferments, observing messages, in line, viewing message packet or content, log access, examining and checking and also removing and redirecting messages. Management on the machine console which on other systems can be very unreliable where a server is in an awkward location but in client server approach you can choose to run the client on the server machine.in client server approach there is web management which works well for some things for example Isode''s client server and also allows other interfaces to be used.
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Many of the IT systems nowadays make use of the three tier architecture but this approach has failed to look on the problems that institutions and organization's face. This forces these organizations to look on new ways of combining their business processes with those of their partners. Clerks entering data cannot see other relevant data and the frontline people cannot access to detailed institution reports. Initiatives such as MOM project and an organization wide notes implementation try to deal with these problems but the unruly is that work to rule comebacks from middle organization effectively cleaned the amazing technical success each such project attains on the restarts of individuals involved. Centralized control has actually been tightened over the period with the reaction to server growth and document loss leading to centralized document management.