An operating system (abbreviated to OS) comprising of a subset of basic programs which act as an interface between hardware and user and provide them with a set of tools enabling program design, application programming, execution of applications while managing the system's resources for efficient operation. Operating systems offer an environment in which a user can execute other applications (e.g. Management information system) in a comfortable and efficient manner.
Topology of operating systems according to type
Operating system can be divided according to type into:
- on-line processing systems - interactive systems
- users and the system can interact directly
- user activities are immediately executed after being fed in
- off-line processing systems - batch processing
- there is a noticeable delay after a task has been fed in and executed
- a user cannot interfere with a task already in execution
Typology of operating systems according to applications
- Mainframe operating systems: These are designed to run on large, centralized computer systems and handle high-volume, transaction-oriented processing. Examples include IBM's z/OS and Unisys' MCP.
- Server operating systems: These are designed to run on servers and handle multiple users and tasks simultaneously. Examples include Microsoft Windows Server, Linux, and Unix.
- Desktop operating systems: These are designed for use on personal computers and laptops. Examples include Microsoft Windows, macOS, and Linux.
- Mobile operating systems: These are designed for use on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. Examples include Android, iOS, and Windows Phone.
- Embedded operating systems: These are designed for use in embedded devices such as industrial control systems, medical equipment, and consumer electronics. Examples include VxWorks, QNX, and ThreadX.
- Real-time operating systems: These are designed to provide deterministic, real-time performance for applications that require immediate and accurate processing of data. Examples include VxWorks and QNX.
- Cloud operating systems: These are designed to run on cloud-based infrastructure and provide scalable, on-demand computing resources. Examples include OpenStack, Cloud Foundry, and Windows Azure.
- Non-multitasking - new tasks cannot be executed until previous one has finished
- Multitasking - many tasks (processes) can run concurrently, sharing the time of central processing unit (CPU) according to a given schedule
Other types of operating systems
- Real-time systems - process data to meet a certain deadline
- Network and distributed systems - enable management of a number of distributed processing systems, which together form a computer network but each have their own private resources
- Embedded systems - for small scale systems such as PDA or mobile phones, in which resources are very limited.
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Author: Anna Opalińska