I have tailored the configuration files so that they can run on two nodes rather than four nodes.

Basically, I am trying to say that I have cut short the configuration file so that it can run on just two nodes rather than four nodes. Is tailored a correct word to use here?

  • Yes, that's fine. Nov 18 '15 at 23:11
  • Yes, of course this totally depends upon your mood and it shows that you are thinking positive here Nov 19 '15 at 7:33
  • 1
    This is a fair question, although it would be better if you included a definition from a dictionary, to show you had done some research. That's the normal way to ask about the meanings of a single word on ELL. You can read more about that at these three meta posts: #1084, #1078, and #439.
    – J.R.
    Nov 29 '15 at 9:36

Yes, tailor can be used to describe the customization of a computing system.

I started by looking up the word on OneLook, a helpful website that provides links to several online dictionaries. One of those links – the one to Wordnik, shows this meaning:

To make or adapt (something) for a specific need.

I can see why tailor would be a tricky word for a learner, because most of the definitions deal with tailoring suits and clothing. It would be easy to look up that word in a dictionary and wonder if applying it more figuratively to a computer system would be too much of a stretch. Yet Google can provide other examples where the word is used in such contexts, including this sentence from a U.S. Patent (emphasis added):

Each user may tailor the configuration file to his or her own needs rather than having to utilize a mass produced configuration file that that may not be suitable for each individual user's needs.

  • +1 Even a native speaker unfamiliar with the vocabulary used in this specific context would be unsure of the appropriateness of the word without a bit of research.
    – user20792
    Nov 29 '15 at 11:35

Yes, it is appropriate.

You customised the files to suit a particular individual situation.

Just like a tailor might adjust the size of a suit to fit a customer's individual size and shape.


I think there's nothing wrong with the sentence grammatically. You can also shorten the sentence by saying:

I have tailored the configuration files to run on two nodes rather than four nodes.

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