Operating System Basics Functions of Operating Systems – An operating system is the software on a computer that manages the way different programs use its hardware, and regulates the ways that a user controls the computer. – Provide a user interface – Run programs – Organized file storage Types of Operating Systems – Real-time operating system — Very fast small OS — Built into a device — Respond quickly to user input — MP3 players, Medical devices – Single user/Single tasking OS — One user works on the system — Performs one task at a time — MS-DOS (MicroSoft Disk Operating System) and Palm OS — MS-DOS is an operating system for x86-based (Intel 8086 microprocessor) personal computers, which was purchased by Microsoft. It was the most commonly used member of the DOS family of operating systems, and was the main operating system for personal computers during the 1980s up to mid 1990s. It was gradually replaced on consumer desktop computers by operating systems offering a graphical user interface (GUI), in particular by various generations of the Microsoft Windows operating system. — Palm OS (also known as Garnet OS) is a mobile operating system initially developed by Palm. for personal digital assistants (PDAs) in 1996. Palm OS is designed for ease of use with a touchscreen-based graphical user interface. It is provided with a suite of basic applications for personal information management. — Take up little space on disk — Run on inexpensive computers – Single user/Multitasking OS — User performs many tasks at once — Most common form of OS — Windows XP and OS X — Require expensive computers — Tend to be complex – Multi user/Multitasking OS — Many users connect to one computer — Each user has a unique session — UNIX, Linux, and VMS — UNIX is a computer operating system originally developed in 1969 at Bell Labs. Recently Unix-like operating systems such as Linux commonly encountered. — Linux is computer operating systems based on the Linux kernel. Linux can be installed on a wide variety of computer hardware, ranging from embedded devices such as mobile phones and smartphones to mainframes and supercomputers. Linux is predominantly known for its use in servers — Maintenance can be easy — Requires a powerful computer Providing a User Interface – Graphical user interface (GUI) — Most common interface – Windows, OS X, Gnome, KDE — Uses a mouse to control objects — Uses a desktop metaphor — Shortcuts open programs or documents — Open documents have additional objects — Task switching — Dialog boxes allow directed input – Command line interfaces — Older interface – DOS, Linux, UNIX — User types commands at a prompt — User must remember all commands — Included in all GUIs
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