DBMS Architecture: 1-Tier, 2-Tier & 3-Tier


DBMS as we all know helps manage the databases, so it is very essential to know its basic architecture. It mainly utilizes various programming languages. The main motive is to design a specific type of software that can be helpful for any small or large business. Database architecture emphasizes DDIM principles, it means to design, development, implementation, and maintenance. Here this is deployed on various programs of computers. The entire design of the DBMS depends on the architecture. Architecture can either be centralized or it can be decentralized depending upon the needs.

DBMS architecture
DBMS architecture

What is the need for DBMS architecture?

  • The DBMS structure rest upon its architecture.
  • As the basic client/server architecture is deployed for dealing  with numerous PCs, database servers, web servers and so many different components that are linked with each other
  • The network is used for linking the client/server architecture that comprises of many PCs and a workstation.
  • DBMS architecture depends upon how users are connected to the database to get their requests done.

Also check: DBMS vs File System

One tier architecture

  • In the single-tier architecture,  the main benefit is the database is directly available to the user. It simply means users can use data according to their accord.
  • If any modification is performed here, it will directly be performed on the database itself. It doesn’t offer a convenient tool for end-users.
  • The single-tier architecture is deployed for the development of the local applications and in this programmers get the freedom to communicate with the database for a prompt response
  • For Example- Suppose you are HOD of the University and you want to view the details of the teachers from the database and the database is present at your system. This will ease down the process because the request of accessing the teacher’s details will be done by your system and the records will be fetched directly without taking interference of anyone. This is also referred to as a local system.

Two-Tier Architecture

  • The 2-tier architecture of DBMS mainly adds an Application layer between the DBMS and User.
  • This mainly responsible for communicating the request of the user to DBMS and the application layer. This will further assist in sending user request to DBMS and acknowledge the user via DBMS
  • The application layer is here known as ODBC that is open database connectivity. It gives the API due to which DBMS gets calls from Client-side program
  • The user interfaces and application programs are executed on the client-side.
  • The server side is accountable to deliver the functionalities like query processing and transaction management.
  • To communicate with the DBMS, the client-side application establishes a connection with the server-side.

3 tier Architecture

  • 3 tier structure is the extension of a two-tier structure. In 2 tier there is a role of application layer but in a 3-Tier architecture have another layer between the client and server.
  • The main thing is to be noted here is, the client can’t directly communicate with the server.
  • In 3 tier architecture, a supplementary presentation layer or GUI layer is added. It is responsible for providing a GUI for end-users to interact with the database management system
  • The application on the client-end interacts with an application server which further communicates with the database system and processes the request of the end-users.
  • End-user has no idea about the presence of the database beyond the application server. Even the database is also unaware of the users.
  • The 3-Tier architecture is used in the case of large web applications.

Also check: Data Storage Hierarchy


In this article, we have discussed the DBMS architecture. If you are having any kind of doubt, ask me freely in the comment box.

Also, attempt the free DBMS Practice Test

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Palvi Soni is a technical content writer and researcher. She is here to explore her best skills and impart relevant knowledge to the readers. She loves to write on different niches like career, education, data science, and digital marketing.


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