An Introduction To Computer Operating Systems
A powered computer with no operating system will only display coded text messages only understandable to the computer itself as the coded text messages will only depict the booting process.
By: Laptop University
During the early 80s, computers lacked not only the hard drive but also the operating systems; instead they used an MS-DOS kind of operating system. The computer could boot from a floppy disk. The floppy disk basically stored all the drivers required by MS-DOS to communicate with the hardware, in addition to the main program i.e. spreadsheet, word processor etc. Needless to mention, it was very cumbersome to keep exchanging the floppy disks. This prompted the invention of the operating system.
An operating system, to say the least is a software program that manages how the hardware and software of a computer work. It controls all activities of each component in a computer, decodes commands and then displays them as user-friendly interface (GUI). Further, the operating system decodes and translates commands given by a mouse and keyboard into a binary code so that it is able to communicate with accessories such as speakers, scanners, printers, etc. having an operating system will mean that your computer will not require a floppy disk to store programs or for booting, as everything is stored in the computer.
You will also find an operating system in game consoles, PDAs and portable music players, and the function is the same - enabling user-to-hardware communication. Amongst the first systems to establish an operating system was the Apple’s Macintosh computer. Linux, Unix, IBM, Mac OS X, Vista, Windows, and Zeta followed suit, and are the few operating systems available today.
If you are seeking to upgrade your computer to a new operating system, ensure your hardware is compatible with the OS. This is to say that you cannot upgrade a Windows 98 to a Windows XP OS, as the windows 98 hardware is not compatible with a Windows XP OS. If you manage to install anyway, be prepared for numerous computer errors.
Also ensure that your OS is compatible with your type of machine. This is to say that Macintosh computer hardware differs greatly from Windows computer hardware, and a Macintosh Operating system cannot function in a Windows computer and vice versa.
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