Do you recall hearing the phrase bottleneck used in relation to computer science? Do you know what a bottleneck is? Are you aware that a bottleneck can significantly slow down your system? Do you know how to identify the types of bottlenecks in a computer system to ensure that it operates to its full potential?

You’ll learn more about the answers to the questions above by reading this article. So let’s begin by defining the term.

Defining Bottleneck

The term bottleneck refers to both an overloaded network and the state of a computing device in which one component is unable to keep pace with the rest of the system, thus slowing overall performance.1

In simpler terms, it is the overcrowding or congestion in a software process, hardware product, or computer network that slows down the entire process. Any project methodology that involves a sequence or progression that can be slowed down is susceptible to bottlenecks.2 For example, if a website is mentioned on a popular page, it could lead to a bottleneck when all of its visitors try to visit the page simultaneously, resulting in errors or prolonged page loading times for some visitors.

What Elements Influence Bottleneck?

Different PC parts have different effects on the bottleneck. Processor (CPU), graphics card (GPU), and their interplay are the major components that affect your PC’s performance and bottlenecks.2

What are the Major Types of Bottlenecks?

  • Software Application Bottleneck
Software Application Bottleneck

Multiple software components are used in the development of software. An application bottleneck is a situation in which a single component limits the performance and capacity of other components or the entire application. This restriction might be brought on by coding mistakes or an unsatisfactory logical flow in the design.3,1

  • Hardware Bottleneck 
Hardware Bottleneck

Whenever the CPU is overloaded and unable to perform tasks on time, it is referred to as a processor, hardware, or CPU bottleneck. The performance gap between your CPU and other PC components, most notably the GPU, is the primary reason for a CPU bottleneck. You can get rid of this CPU bottleneck by upgrading your CPU and RAM.3,1

  • Network Bottleneck
Network Bottleneck

A network bottleneck occurs when there is congestion in your network flow due to the high volume of network traffic. This typically occurs when your network bandwidth is insufficient to support all network operations, including web browsing, emailing, watching videos, downloading content, and playing online games.3,1

Therefore, with the knowledge and understanding of bottlenecks, you can see how the components of a computer can limit or enhance your experience. If you enjoyed reading this article and would like to see more like it, visit BYJU’S FutureSchool Blog.


  1. Bottlenecking: 5 Most Common CPU Bottlenecks | Apica. (n.d.). Retrieved September 7, 2022, from 
  2. What Is Bottlenecking My PC? – Intel. (n.d.). Retrieved September 7, 2022, from 
  3. Understanding Performance Bottlenecks | VMware. (n.d.). Retrieved September 7, 2022, from 
  4. Performance Bottleneck – an overview | ScienceDirect Topics. (n.d.). Retrieved September 7, 2022, from