Users of computers mush have heard the term," operating systems". But how many are really aware of the exact tasks of the same. Do you all know that it is the most important component of your computer? Any laptop or desktop pc that you normally buy these days comes with Windows XP operating system and Macintosh computers with OS X. Various corporate servers use Linux or UNIX operating systems. An operating system is the initial thing to be loaded onto any computer.
Of late operating systems have even been made available in smaller computers too. Operating systems are even available in wireless access points and cell phones. The systems in these small devices are so advanced that are capable of actually running operating systems and applications. In any device that has an operating system, there is usually a way to make changes as to how the device works, thus changes and modifications can be done without taking the device apart. Operating systems cannot be seen in every computer. For example, the computer that controls the microwave oven doesn't need one as it has only one specific set of tasks to run in a hardware environment that never changes.
The purpose of operating systems is to organize and control hardware's and software's so that the device it operates in works in an adaptable and predictable manner. An operating system gives the capacity to give out a variety of purposes, interact with computer users in less complicated manners and keep up to date with requirements that keep changing with time.
The common operating systems used world wide are Windows family developed by Microsoft, operating systems by Macintosh are developed by Apple and operating systems of the UNIX family (which was developed by many collaborators, corporations and individuals.) There are many othrt operating systems available in the market specially crafted for special-purpose applications like, robotics, manufacturing, real time control systems, mainframes, etc.
The basic tasks of operating system is to manage the hardware and software resources used by the system, and provide a stable, consistent method for applications to deal with hardware in less complicated, un-technical manners. This is the challenge faced by operating system developers to keep the operating systems flexible to run hardware from thousands of vendors manufacturing computer equipment with the ever changing technologies.
The operating system is also responsible to manage the processor, memory, devices, storage, application interfaces and user interfaces.
These are the basics of operating systems, the knowledge of which will benefit all users of computers and systems with operating systems, to help make wise choices in the future.