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What Does Tweaking Mean?

Tweaking is the process of fine-tuning complex devices, typically electronic devices. In simple words, it is a method for making small changes to fine-tune hardware or software.


Sometimes, tweaking can also refer to slightly altering the values of underlying variables so that the actual result of a program coincides with the desired outcome. In this situation, tweaking may not be the best thing, as it weakens the program’s integrity.

Techopedia Explains Tweaking

Hardware tweaking involves adjusting specific parts of the hardware to get optimum results. For example, tweaking activities might include replacing cables, overclocking the CPU, modifying the jumper settings, improving system cooling, modifying the memory unit timing, and so on.

Software tweaking is a method of enhancing the functionality of an application or improving the quality of its end result. This can be done manually or with the help of a specialized tweaking software program. Linux and other open-source products encourage tweaking. Microsoft limits tweaking on its Windows operating system; the MAC OS strongly discourages or prohibits tweaking as well.

Some software manufacturers and developers, such as the LAME MP3 Encoder, perform continuous software tweaking to:

  • Maintain modern and precise software applications
  • Shape programming code boundaries
  • Remain competitive

Tweaks are irrelevant if an application source is closed or the user does not have programming experience.


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Margaret Rouse
Senior Editor
Margaret Rouse
Senior Editor

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.