Top 10 Modern Software Architecture Patterns that are Most used for Software Development Projects

6 minutes read
Last updated
March 16, 2023
Software Architecture
Good, scalable software is highly valued to customers, businesses and society as well. A great software architecture helps to deliver a great software product to end-users

The main aim of software architecture patterns is to group various components according to a familiar interface or architecture and create a software system. To achieve this, a software architect needs to ensure the appropriate relationships among the multiple members while designing the system. 

However, sometimes the architectural design may not allow for such relationships among the various components. In such situations, software engineers may be forced to alter their original format. However, a well-designed software with proper relationships among the multiple components can help reduce the effort required in Developing Software Systems.   

So, to get the best software architectural styles, software developers have to keep in mind various software architectural styles that can help achieve a good software architecture.   

These patterns come with various effective techniques that will assist software developers in building more unique software. 

What is a Software Architectural Pattern?

An architectural pattern is a general, reusable solution to a commonly occurring problem in software architecture. Software architectures are like templates that can be applied to create specific architectural designs. They are often used to document architectural decisions and to help communicate between different stakeholders.

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There are three main types of architectural patterns:

  • Creational patterns deal with the process of creating objects
  • Structural patterns deal with the relationships between objects
  • Behavioral patterns deal with the way objects interact and communicate with each other.

architectural patterns provide a common language that developers can use to describe and communicate architectural designs. By using architectural elements, developers can more easily share their knowledge and expertise and collaborate with others to create better communication channels.

Different Types of Software Architecture Patterns

Software architecture is all about the structure and design of software systems. Software architects have been developed to help software development life cycle, optimize costs for efficiency or improve customer experience with reusable components that can be shared across different software design projects without having re-implement them again every time you start a new one.

Let's take look at some most popular architectural patterns in software systems engineering: 

1. Layered Architecture (n-tier) 

layered architecture

The layered architecture pattern has been in use in various forms for decades. Still, it has only recently that software engineers have begun to incorporate it into their software architecture designs & application development.   

This software architecture pattern was developed to respond to the deficiencies of the client-server model becoming popular. It’s more generic than the client-server model. A layered architecture pattern consists of several layers- typically a hierarchy of object models that provide distinct advantages for designers and developers alike.   

The key benefit of layered architecture is that it abstracts away from the programmer's knowledge of how the different layers work together, allowing the programmer to focus their time on the business aspects of the software model rather than having to understand how each layer works for one another.   

Another advantage of the layered architecture pattern is that it decouples system-level concerns from those of the application interface, again allowing the software engineer to spend their time on the business aspects of the software instead of being tied down to the programming interface. 

Usage of Layered Architecture

  • Typically used in enterprise applications.
  • When requiring strict standards of maintainability and testability.
  • Desktop applications or ecommerce web frontends
  • The right technology for the traditional IT department.
  • Perfect for the inexperienced team who may lack knowledge about architecture patterns.

2. Event-driven Architecture 

event-driven architecture

Event-driven architecture is a software architecture design approach promoting the creation and management of event-driven events. An event represents an occurrence of a substantial interest by the user.  

EAD aims to support the efficient management and control of event chains, which are, in turn, helpful in developing large-scale event processing systems. The chief benefit of this architecture is that it allows a business team to focus on the tasks at hand while efficiently handling the collection, processing, and reporting of data rapidly.  

The processing can be done quickly regardless of the event type, allowing finite time to be allocated to critical tasks.   

Lastly, the architecture will ensure that any changes are automatically deployed if necessary, ensuring that only the most significant changes are made to the system. 

Usage of Event-driven Architecture

  • Used for interfaces that need individual data blocks to interact with just a few modules.
  • Useful when you want an easy-to-understand interface.
  • When don't have the space or time required by rows and columns of information in tables.
  • Best for Android development & Notification services.

3. MicroKernel Architecture 

microkernel architecture

Microkernel Designing and Application Specific Embedded Operating Systems (ASX) is the most efficient information technology (IT) and software design approach.   

The Microkernel architecture is a generic kernel that can be embedded into any existing operating system. Since it has generic functionality, which requires no change in the applications that use the same Kernel, this approach allows software engineers to rapidly develop new features without waiting to release the next version of the operating system.   

With this architecture pattern, software engineers can freely develop new software modules. Moreover, they can load their plug-in modules immediately after creating them or load their modules after the system is installed.   

This contrasts with the software development model, where such module loading is performed only once. 

Usage of MicroKernel Architecture

  • Can be very effective in certain industries such as healthcare and banking.
  • The right appropriate segmentation between basic routines, and higher-order rules.
  • Good for dynamic situations that need frequent updates.


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4. Microservices Architecture 

microservices architecture

Microservices architecture is a variation of the enterprise architecture (ESA) architectural style, arranging an application as a small set of loosely coupled, logic-driven services.   

This software architecture often uses a generic programming language to express services, which reduces the overhead associated with software system design such as ecommerce solutions. In this pattern, benefits are typically fine-grained and loosely coupled.   

An Architecture of a system can be fulfilled by various technologies-agnostic protocols like HTTP or XML. Enterprise architecture engineers usually re-use logic from client software and distribute them through distributed systems.   

They can also easily adjust the software response to various inputs, minimizing the effect of an issue on other clients.  

Usage of  Microservices Architecture

  • Perfect for the fast and rapid development of a software or application system.
  • Good for websites that include fewer elements, high-level design components & only implement some specific function.

5. Space-based Architecture 

space-based architecture

Space-based architecture implies using the entire physical volume of a given volume as the repository of its resources. This technique enables large-scale systems with much greater parallelism and helps efficiency than what can be achieved with the traditional CPU-based architectures.   

Space-based architectures allow for the coordination of the deployment of workloads through a transparent service layer that can easily communicate the critical business requirements with the necessary application servers.   

This abstracted hardware also performs most of the work traditionally reserved for the CPU, such as memory management, system management, input/output processing (I/O) operations, implementation, and device management.

Usage of Space-based Architecture

  • Good for larger user base application or software.
  • When need to split the software functionality for overall success for a software design.

6. Master-slave Architecture pattern

The master-slave pattern is a software architecture pattern in which an software components are divided into two parts, master and slave. The Master is responsible for managing the overall development process while the slave handles specific tasks like design flaws, structure, tools & security etc.

This architect pattern is often used in distributed applications, where the master process controls and coordinates the activity of the slave processes. It can also be used in concurrent programming & functional requirements, where one master-slave pattern can be used to divide a program into two parts that can run in parallel.

The Master-slave pattern has several benefits, including improved performance, scalability & security. When used in a distributed system, it can help to improve availability by allowing the Master process to continue running even if one or more Slave processes fail.

Usage of Master-slave pattern

  • Master-slave pattern is often used in distributed systems, where each node in the system is responsible for a specific task.
  • Used to improve performance by distributing work across multiple nodes.
  • Sometimes used to provide redundancy.

7. Client-server Architecture Pattern

The Client-server architecture pattern is a common design approach for many software or applications. In this pattern, the client (typically a user interface) makes requests to the server (usually a back-end service or database), which then processes these requests and returns the appropriate data to the client system's architecture.

This software architecture has a number of advantages, including the ability to scale the back-end services independently of the front-end, and the fact that each component can be implemented in different programming languages.

Usage of Client-server Pattern

  • When a software design for finance & banking system, email, web, gaming, etc.
  • Perfect for telecommunication applications system.

8. Pipe-filter Architecture Pattern

The Pipe-filter architecture is a common software architecture pattern that involves passing data through a sequence of processing steps, or "filters". Each filter performs a specific task on the data, such as transformation, validation, or conversion.

pattern that involves passing data through a sequence of processing steps, or "filters". Each filter performs a specific task on the data, such as transformation, validation, or conversion.

pattern that involves passing data through a sequence of processing steps, or "filters". Each filter performs a specific task on the data, such as transformation, validation, or conversion.

This architecture is often used in situations where data needs to be processed in a specific order, or where different steps need to be performed on different data sets.

One advantage of the Pipe-filter architecture is that it can be easily parallelized, as each filter can be run on a separate thread.

This can improve performance by taking advantage of multiple processors or cores. Another advantage is that new filters can be added to the pipeline without affecting the existing filters.

Usage of Pipe-filter Pattern

  • Well suited to parallel processing, as the individual tasks can be executed concurrently.
  • Workflows in bioinformatics.

9. Peer-to-peer Architecture Pattern

Peer-to-peer (P2P) architecture is a type of distributed computing architecture where each node in the network acts as both a client and a server. P2P architecture is often used in decentralized applications (dApps) and Peer-to-Peer Networks (P2PN).

In a P2P network, each node has a unique address and can connect to any other node in the network. Nodes can also act as both clients and servers, allowing them to communicate with each other directly without the need for a central server. This makes P2P networks more resilient to attacks and failures, as there is no single point of failure.

P2P networks can also be used for Peer-to-Peer live streaming (P2PLS) applications. P2PLS applications allow users to stream live video and audio content to other users in the network. P2PLS applications are often used for live events, such as concerts and conferences.

P2P networks have many advantages over traditional client-server architecture, including improved security, resistance to attacks and failures, and increased efficiency.

Usage of Peer-to-peer Pattern

  • P2P networks are often used for Peer-to-Peer file sharing (P2PFS) applications.
  • For distributing files than traditional client-server architecture.
  • Often used to distribute large files, such as movies and video games, which would be too large to store.

10. Broker Architecture Pattern

The Broker Architecture Pattern is a common software architecture pattern used in software engineering. It is often used to provide a communication layer between different parts of a system, or between different systems.

The Broker Architecture Pattern makes it easier to change or add components to the system, as they will not need to be changed in order to work with the new component.

The Broker Architecture Pattern can also be used to provide a layer of abstraction between different systems. This can make it easier to integrate different systems, as they will not need to communicate directly with each other.

Usage of Broker Pattern

  • Widely used to build robust and scalable systems.
  • Decouple components in a system.

Final Thoughts 

It is often necessary to prove that the software & web development is robust and adaptable and can be used in various environments in software architecture. This can be done by proof of deliverability, that is, the software's ability to be successfully deployed in different types of environments.   

This can be done through code coverage, test coverage, and regression testing. These are forms of test cases and verification techniques that can be applied individually or together to guarantee that the software architecture is correct and can be used effectively an application development process.   

All of these techniques can be combined into what is known as an assurance of deliverability.   

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the purpose of implementing software architecture patterns? 

In software engineering, developers have often faced some common issues at the software design level. In order to solve these issues, software architecture patterns are used as structural layouts of a software design. 

What is Pattern in Software Architecture? 

An architectural pattern is a simple and transformable option to resolve common problems in software architecture for an individual context. These software architecture patterns identify the issues including the device performance & limitations in a particular software development process.  

What does software architecture? 

Software architecture comprises all the software development elements, & builds the relationship between components. It is the structure of the system and forms the external visible components of the system.  

Why is software architecture so important? 

In the software development industry, software architecture is called the vehicle of various stakeholders communication. For a software development project, most of the developers or system stakeholders use software architecture to collaborate with each other, maintaining communication, understanding, and discussions. It also expresses the design decision and identifies the abstraction of the system.  

What are Architecture Patterns and their Importance? 

For a software system, the architectural patterns explicit the fundamental structure and company schema. These patterns enable a couple of predefined subsystems to organize the particular software development rules and guidelines.  

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