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I know this is a silly qn to ask.But one of my friend who doesn't know anything about sharepoint he asked me this.His qn was "Whether sharepoint is 3-tier architecture or 2-tier architecture".So how can u explain a layman about sharepoint architecture....Thanks in advance.

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In classic terms it would be n-tier. The web pages communicate to back-end objects that control the interaction with the database. The overall architecture is extremely complicated with services and objects running on different servers under different credentials, but what an administrator or even a "SharePoint Developer" needs to know is much less complicated since most of that is abstracted and handled for you.

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He is probably referring to whether your SharePoint farm is installed across multiple servers or just one server.

Are we able to ask for a bit more information on the context of your question which made him respond with the n-tier remark?

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In layman terms how can u describe a sharepoint architecture? –  Anonymous Jun 17 '10 at 19:00
    
In basic terms, SharePoint has a database backend which powers a web front-end. Both the back end and front end can run on many servers and have the load spread across them. There are "service applications" (providing search functionalities, amongst many other things) which sit in between the database backend and web front-ends, which give you your 3 tiers. –  James Love Jun 17 '10 at 20:05

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