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What is an Operating System?

An Operating System, commonly known as OS, is a software (set of programs) that manages all other programs in a computer. OS controls all the components of the computer and provide many functions. Operating systems can be of Character Used Interface (CUI), Graphical Used Interface (GUI), Single User, Multi User, Multi Threaded, Multitasking, Multiprocessing type.

Operating System Functions

  • OS receives input from the keyboard, processes it and sends output to the screen (monitor).
  • Manages all directories and files.
  • Acts as an interface to all applications and programs residing on the computer.
  • Allocates system resources to applications and programs.
  • Takes care of all the processes necessary to make the computer work properly.

OS Software & Vendors

Windows Microsoft
Xenix Microsoft
HP-UX Hewlett Packard
Macintosh Apple
Sun Solaris Oracle Corporation