asynchronoussynchronous. 1. (operating system) A process in a multitasking system whose execution can proceed independently, "in the background". Other processes may be started before the asynchronous process has finished. 2. (communications) A communications system in which data transmission may start at any time and is indicated by a start bit, e.g. EIA-232. A data byte (or other element defined by the protocol) ends with a stop bit. A continuous marking condition (identical to stop bits but not quantized in time), is then maintained until data resumes.
Last updated: 1995-12-08