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What is the operating system - Essay Example

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The operating system is the software that, essentially, takes care of all programs that run on a computer. It can be defined as a collection of software used for the management…
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Operating Systems An operating system, or the OS, is the most fundamental and important software used to run a computer. The operating system is the software that, essentially, takes care of all programs that run on a computer. It can be defined as a collection of software used for the management computer hardware (Haldar & Haldar 3). They are also used for the provision common services required for all computer programs. It is a fundamental component in a computer system’s system software. In order to function, application programs will normally need an operating system. While most of the computers in use are using one form of OS, which perform similar functions, the operating systems can be divided into various types of OS. These are batch operating systems, real time operating systems, single user operating systems, multi-user operating systems, and the distributed operating systems.
A batch processing operating system involves interaction between the processor and the computer user that is limited (Haldar & Haldar). The interaction can also be non-existent during the period when the computer is being used. The programs, as well as the data that are required in processing are collected and bunched together in the form of a bunch and are executed at the same time. This operating system is ideal where similar data is being processed; large data amounts are being processed, and where similar processing is used in the execution of data. The batch processing operating system is capable of identifying periods during which the processor is not in use, during which time the batches can be processed. The processing is automatic, which means that any intervention by the computer user is not needed.
The real time operating system is another example. This operating system is capable of processing input simultaneously, as well as fast enough to impact the following process or input (Haldar & Haldar 25). This operating system is normally utilized for the control of complex computer systems that need increased processing like industrial systems and machinery. Another form of an operating system is the single user operating system that, as suggested by its title, is designed for use by one user for them to use the computer at one time. The multi-tasking operating system is an OS with several applications, which can be loaded at the same time and utilized in memory (Haldar & Haldar 35). The processor is capable of handling only a single application at one time. However, it is capable of switching from one application to a new one effectively, and simultaneously executing every application. Currently this OS is now commonplace everywhere and it is the most popular variety of an operating system with the Windows OS being a perfect example of the OS.
An additional example of an operating system is the multi user operating system. This OS lets more than one computer user utilize the system while the processor is capable of splitting its resources to cater to more than a single user at one time (Haldar & Haldar 40). The efficiency and speed at which the processor is capable of doing this shows that there are many users simultaneously making use of the system. A few network systems prefer to use this operating system. Finally, we have the distributed operating system, where the data and software may be distributed among files, programs, and systems stored on separate storage devices that are in different geographical locations. These storage devices can be accessed from different terminals (Haldar & Haldar 56).
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Haldar, Sibsankar. & Alex, Aravind. Operating systems. Upper Saddle River : Pearson, 2010. Print. Read More
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