What is Operating System and Why is it Important to Your Computer?

An operating system is a software application that manages the hardware and software resources of a computer. It also provides common services to computer programs. In this article, we’ll look at some of the key features of an operating system. You’ll learn why this type of software is important to your computer.

Memory Management

The operating system must be able to manage memory to protect the data and code in it from being accessed by other processes. This is the job of the Memory Management Module in the operating system. It provides mechanisms to share memory between processes and allows user-specified sharing. In addition, the memory management system must be able to protect the operating system from programs making memory access requests.

Memory is divided into main memory and secondary memory. The former is divided into fixed-size blocks called pages, while the latter is divided into frames. A process is initially stored in the secondary memory and is moved to the main memory when it is needed. A process consists of parts the size of a page, and each page is mostly stored in one memory frame. Memory is not always allocated contiguously, and the memory management system must make sure that two processes are not referencing data in the same memory block.

File System

The file system is a collection of hardware and software components that enable a computer to manage and organize files. These components include the file system, disk controller, buffer cache, hard disk, and device drivers. In addition, these components are part of an operating system. However, file systems are not the same for all operating systems.

Unlike traditional computer systems, file systems don’t disappear after a user logs out or closes the system. They also have access permissions associated with them that allow users to control who can view them. Additionally, file systems can be organized into complex structures. For instance, a directory can group together several files, each with its own attributes. A file system also allows the computer to recover from crashes and prevent data loss.

Process Abstraction

Process abstraction is a key component of the operating system (OS) design. It helps to separate kernel-level processes from PC-level processes. It enables a single entity for the OS Scheduler to manipulate. While the kernel-level data about a process is kept separately, the PC-level data is merged into the process execution context.

Despite its benefits, OS developers face an additional challenge: maintaining the system’s reliability. Applications requiring high availability must be able to operate without human intervention. Decoupling resources allows developers to secure data and create recovery mechanisms in the event of failure. It can also improve load-balancing algorithms. This approach promotes application reliability and minimizes performance overhead.

Interface With Users

The interface of a computer runs on the same concept, but it differs from the user interface in several ways. A typical user interface consists of buttons that the user can click on to perform various actions. However, not all users like buttons and may not want to use them. As a result, the interface should be simple and easy to use.

The command line interface is another type of user interface. It is an alternative to the GUI and is used by technical users. It allows the user to issue commands, such as creating files, printing, or setting up a printer. It is also a common interface used by programmers, system administrators, engineers, and advanced personal computer users.


Security of the operating system is a critical aspect of any computer system. If it’s not well protected, your computer could be vulnerable to hackers. There are many ways to make your computer more secure. The first is to minimize the number of users and services on the system. This will limit the number of vulnerable processes, and it’ll help to keep open ports and filesystem access to a minimum. Another way to protect your computer is to ensure that only authorized users can add, change, or start processes. You can do this by configuring the operating system’s logging parameters.

Another way to keep your operating system safe is to use an antivirus product. This product will scan for potential threats and detect and block them before they can affect your system. Another way to protect your computer is by installing a firewall. These security tools can help to keep out malware and other threats that could otherwise compromise the system.


The cost of an operating system is highly variable and depends on various factors. It can be as low as a few hundred dollars for an embedded system or as high as tens of millions for z/OS and AIX. These factors include the security and reliability of the operating system, the size of the development team, the quality of the code, and the time available to complete the project. For example, the first version of MS dos was developed for very little money, but it took three attempts before it became stable. Furthermore, it was a very poorly developed operating system that had little security and reliability.

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