operating systems functions

Definition of Operating system and its functions

The System Concept


A system or computer system is a combination of three elements. These three elements are hardware, firmware, and software. The software may also be classified as system one system software and another application software. Where system software includes an operating system, translator, communication software and utility software. Similarly, application software includes word processing software, spreadsheet software, database software, presentation software, and entertainment software. Now the above topics are described as below:

1. Hardwarea computers keyboard

It refers to all the physical components of a computer system which can be seen and touched are called hardware. For example, a keyboard, monitor, mouse, etc.




2. Firmwarea computers firmware

It refers to a sequence of instruction substituted for hardware or a firmware is a software that is available on hardware generally in ROM.





3. Softwarea computers software

The software is the set of programs, procedure and associated documentation related to the effective operation of the computer system. Usually, software is two types:




A. System software

It is a set of one or more programs. It is designed to control the operation. And it extends the processing capability of a computer system. Some features of system software are as follows,

  • It supports to develop the application software.
  • Supports to execute the application software.
  • Also, it controls the peripheral devices.
  • Likewise above features also it commands to the management of peripheral devices.


Some of the commonly known system software’s are as below:

 I. Operating systemoperating system of the computer

Every computer has an operating system. Which takes cares effective and efficient utilization of all the hardware and software components of the computer system. It is a set of integrated programs.  They are used to control the resource of the computer system (CPU, memory, I/O devices). And also provides the interface between user and hardware. Where an interface is a platform where a user can communicate with the computer.

Primary objectives of the operating system are,

  • It makes easy to use a computer system (virtual machine).
  • It controls the resources of the computer system (Resource manager)


Functions of the operating system:functions of operating system

1. Process management

Process management is the first function of the operating system. Some responsible tasks of process management in the operating system are,

  • Process management helps in the creation and deletion of the user process.
  • Also in suspension and resumption of the process.

2. Memory management

Likewise, the process management memory management is an important task of the operating system. Some responsible tasks of memory management in the operating system are,

  • It helps on allocation and de-allocation of memory space.
  • Also, it manages the blank space.

3. File management

Similarly, file management is also an important task. Some responsible tasks of file management in the operating system are,

  • File management helps in the creation and deletion of files and folders.
  • Preventing unwanted notification.

4. Security management

Some responsible tasks of security management in the operating system are,

  • It provides security to file and folders for unwanted modification by hiding system files.
  • Providing user authentication such as username and password.

5. Command interpretation

Some responsible tasks of command interpretation in the operating system are,

  • Manage all the resources i.e. CPU, memory, I/O devices, etc.
  • Its interface/ interaction between user and hardware.


6. Virtual memory management

Some responsible tasks of virtual memory management in the operating system are,

  • Creating a virtual memory for large size programs.
  • To make maximum utilization of primary memory and secondary memory.

II. Translator

Translators are the system software that is used to translate source code into object code (machine code). Maybe a translator is a language translator. Where translators are:


It is a translator which translate a low-level language into object code.


It is translator which goes through the entire program and translates into machine code or object code.


It is also translator which translates one statement at a time and next till the entire program into object code.

III. Communication software in the computercommunication software

In a network environment, communication software enables the transfer of data and program from one computer system to another. For example, hypertext transfer protocol (HTTP), simple mail transfer protocol (SMTP), etc.


IV. Utilities (utility programs)computers security tool

There are a set of programs which helps the user in system maintenance task. Some of the joint tasks performed by the utility program include:

  • Disk defragmentation
  • Data backup utility
  • Antivirus utility
  • Disk cleanup
  • Data recovery

B. Application softwarecomputers application software

It is a set of one or more programs. Are designed to solve a specific or to do a specific task. The program includes in an application software package is called an application program. And programmer who prepares application software is referred to as an application programmer. Some of the well-known application software’s are,

1. Word processing software

It enables us to make use of the computer system for creating, editing, viewing, formatting, printing documents, etc. e.g. MS-Word.

2. Spreadsheet software

This software is a numeric data analysis tool which allows us to create a type of computerized ledger e.g. MS-Excel.

3. Database software

The database is a collection of related data. And store them. Then the data is treated as a unit for information retrieval purpose. Database software enables us to create a database and maintain the data e.g. MS-Excess.

4. Presentation software

This software is used to present data with high attention to the viewer with shorted way e.g. MS-PowerPoint.


5. Entertainment softwarecomputers game

Entertainment software allows the computer as an entertainment tool. An excellent example of such an application is a computer game.

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