Distributed Computing System: Definition, Examples


A Distributed Computing System is a model where multiple interconnected computers share their resources and work together to perform tasks. These systems allow for computation to be performed concurrently across devices, increasing efficiency and processing speed. The distributed system can be spread across physical locations, and they communicate and coordinate their actions through a network.


The phonetic pronunciation of “Distributed Computing System” is: dis-trib-yoot-ed kuhm-pyoot-ing sis-tuhm.

Key Takeaways

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  1. Efficiency: The Distributed Computing System allows for high efficiency and speed. By breaking up larger tasks into smaller ones, different machines can work on separate tasks simultaneously, resulting in faster and more efficient processing.
  2. Scalability: Distributed systems can easily be scaled up or down according to the needs of the project. New resources (like additional servers or storage capacity) can be added as required without disrupting the system’s overall performance.
  3. Reliability: In a distributed computing system, if one node fails, the other nodes can continue to function. This redundancy reduces the risk of system failure and increases the system’s overall reliability and fault-tolerance.



The term Distributed Computing System is crucial in the realm of technology due to its foundational role in operating and connecting different computers and networks within a single system. This technology enables corporations, enterprises, or even users to run tasks and process data more proficiently by distributing complex computing tasks among multiple processors. As a result, it enhances computational speed, system reliability, resource sharing, and data processing efficiency. Moreover, Distributed Computing paves the way for real-world applications such as cloud computing, online-based services like the Internet of Things (IoT), and blockchain technology, making it an integral part of modern digital infrastructure.


Distributed Computing System (DCS) serves a significant purpose of enhancing efficiency and reliability in the digital sphere. By dividing complex computing tasks into smaller subtasks, it allows multiple machines, or ‘nodes’, to work in tandem across geographically dispersed locations. Each node solves its designated subtask, and the collective output is then consolidated to solve the original, more complex problem. Through this, DCS allows for higher computational speed, enabling the quick solving of problems which a single machine could take substantially longer to decipher.The practical usage of DCS is vast and wide-ranging in our modern, digital world. Industries, corporations, and scientific research institutions utilize this system for a multitude of tasks that require speedy and efficient computing. DCS is especially advantageous in processing hefty data and in conducting intricate simulations. This is evident in its application in weather forecasting, where DCS assists in analyzing massive amounts of data and predicting weather conditions more accurately and rapidly. Similarly, in the finance sector, it contributes to algorithmic trading and real-time processing of transactions. Hence, the Distributed Computing System is a critical component that propels diverse segments of society towards improved optimization and innovation.


1. Google’s Search Engine: One of the most popular examples of distributed computing systems is Google. When you type a keyword into Google, your request doesn’t go to a single central server. Instead, it is broken up into pieces and spread out to many servers around the globe. Each server processes part of your request and sends back a result. This reduces the load on each individual server and makes the process of searching much faster and more efficient.2. SETI@home: SETI@home (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence at home) is a distributed computing project where volunteers from around the world donate their computer’s idle time to analyze radio signals coming from space. The radio data is divided into small chunks and sent to volunteers’ systems for processing. Once the analysis is completed, results are sent back to SETI’s central system. This distributed system allows SETI to use a large amount of computing power without needing to invest in a supercomputer.3. Apache Hadoop: Apache Hadoop is an open source software framework often used in data-heavy applications. It enables distributed processing of large data sets across clusters of computers using simple programming models. Companies like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn use it to analyze their large data sets in a distributed manner to glean important insights. It comprises several modules that work together to create a distributed computing system.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

Q: What is a Distributed Computing System?A: A Distributed Computing System is a model in which components located on networked computers communicate and interact with each other to achieve a common goal. It allows data and tasks to be distributed across multiple computers to speed up processing and manage large data sets.Q: What are the main advantages of using a Distributed Computing System?A: The main advantages include improved performance through parallel processing, more reliable and fault-tolerant systems due to replication, reduced cost due to the use of low-cost nodes, and the ability to add more nodes to increase capacity.Q: What kinds of tasks can a Distributed Computing System be used for?A: They are typically used for tasks that require a high volume of data processing, like business and scientific applications. This can range from simple tasks such as distributing email to complex tasks like weather forecasting and scientific simulations.Q: What are the challenges of using a Distributed Computing System?A: Some challenges include dealing with the complexities of concurrency and synchronization, error handling and recovery, security, and system-wide performance optimization.Q: Is the internet a kind of Distributed Computing System?A: Yes, the internet is a global-scale distributed computing system. It involves a massive number of computers located around the world, communicating and sharing resources to provide various services, such as the World Wide Web, email, and streaming services.Q: Are there any popular examples of Distributed Computing Systems?A: Yes, some popular examples include the Google search engine, the Amazon e-commerce platform, the Bitcoin Network, and the Global Positioning System (GPS). Q: How is security handled in a Distributed Computing System?A: In a distributed system, security measures such as data encryption, authentication protocols, and access controls are typically implemented. This ensures that only authorized entities have access to resources and protects data from potential breaches.

Related Finance Terms

  • Cloud Computing
  • Grid Computing
  • Network Nodes
  • Data Parallelism
  • Cluster Computing

Sources for More Information


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