Tight Coupling

What Does Tight Coupling Mean?

Tight coupling is a coupling technique in which hardware and software components are highly dependent on each other. It is used to refer to the state/intent of interconnectivity between two or more computing instances in an integrated system.


Tight coupling is also known as high coupling and strong coupling.

Techopedia Explains Tight Coupling

Tight coupling is primarily used in enterprise systems and applications that work on the interconnectivity and inter-processing of two or more systems simultaneously to deliver a cohesive/integrated solution. Typically, a tightly coupled system’s entire logic is distributed across several hardware and software components, which all need to be operational and connected to deliver the business logic/process. For example, a bank ATM machine depends on the ATM machine hardware, built-in firmware/applications and the primary banking application to allow a customer to withdraw cash or access any ATM-specific services. If any of these components is unavailable, the ATM will not work.

Besides hardware and software coupling, tight coupling is also used within software programming to define components that are interlinked and depend on each other to perform or deliver a specific output or process.


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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

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.