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Operating Systems Definition

       An operating system (OS) is software that administers the computer hardware, and provides common services for implementation of application software. For hardware functions such as input and output and memory allocation, the OS acts as a mediator between application programs and the computer hardware.

Objectives of Operating System:

1. Convenience

Operating Systems make computer systems user friendly.

2. Efficiency

Operating Systems allow a computer to utilize resources competently.

3. Ability to evolve

Operating Systems are built in a way to allow effectual development and serve to introduce new functions without interfering with the services.

Types of Operating Systems

Operating systems are classified into different types — single user single tasking operating system, Single user multi tasking operating system, and Multi user multi tasking system.

  • Single User Single Tasking Operating SystemSuch kinds of operating systems can be used by a single user to do a single task at a time. Example of such operating system is MS DOS in which only a single program can be run at a time.

  • Single User Multi Tasking Operating SystemThese operating systems can be used by a single user to do multiple tasks at a time. Microsoft Windows is an example of such an operating system. In Windows only on user can work by logging in to the system but they can perform multiple tasks.

  • Multi-User Multi-TaskingLinux is an example of multi-user multitasking operating systems since it has seven terminals of which six are nongraphical terminals and one is a graphical terminal; enabling seven users to operate a Linux machine at a time.

  • Chrome OS — Chrome is a new operating system created by Google and. It is more a web browser than an operating system with a distinguishing factor—web browser with greatly advanced features. Google is in the process of making a computer which shall have an internet connection and Chrome OS. In such a system the data shall be stored in the internet space and hence it is true that chrome OS is sure to bring about an evolution in the history of operating systems.

Functions & Features of Operating System In A Computer

An operating system has various functions in a computer. Some of which are listed below:

 1) Provide User Interface

Without an OS it is difficult to manage a machine since it acts as the medium of communication between the user and the computer.

2) Input/ Output Management

External storage devices can be installed and configured on a computer system with the help of an OS. The OS recognizes the device and its functions and executes it accordingly. Example—pen drives or other external devices can be run on a computer system with almost no effort due to the OS.

3) Multitasking

Multitasking is yet another significant feature of operating systems (exception—DOS). An OS allows a person to listen to music, update their system and send an email at the same time.

4) Networking

One can easily do networking with the help of an operating system. OS makes sharing files folders or hardware resources like printer through a network easy and convenient.

The operating systems enable users of all ages and spheres to access the computer and the internet. Computer OSs, currently, is based upon its visual aspects for the better understanding of users; indeed developers have succeeded in this regard, for there is no potential to return to the text-based interface.

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