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Chapter 05: System Software: The Operating System, Utility Programs, and File Management

App Bars
Bars that float above the screen and that contain applications such as the Tabs bar and the Address bar; a new feature of Internet Explorer 10.
Application Programming Interface (API)
A set of software routines that allows one software system to work with another.
Application Software
The set of programs on a computer that helps a user carry out tasks such as word processing, sending e-mail, balancing a budget, creating presentations, editing photos.
Authentication
The process of identifying a computer user, based on a login or username and password. The computer systems determines whether the computer user is authorized and what level of access is to be granted on the network.
Basic Input/Output System (BIOS)
A program that manages the data between a computers operating system and all the input and output devices attached to the computer; also responsible for loading the operating system (OS) from its permanent location on the hard drive to random access memory (RAM).
Boot Process
The process for loading the operating system (OS) into RAM when the computer is turned on.
Charms
Special shortcuts for performing common tasks, such as searching or sharing information, created for Windows 8.
Cluster
The smallest increment in which data is stored on hard disks; hard disks are divided into tracks, then wedges,then sectors, then clusters.
Command-Driven Interface
Interface between user and computer in which the user enters commands to communicate with the computer system.
Device Driver
Softest that facilities the communication between a device and its operating system or between a network adapter and a servers operating system and the operating systems of the computer in which the adapter is installed.
Directory
A hierarchical structure that include files, folders, and drive used to create a more organized and efficient computer.
Disk Cleanup
A Windows utility that removes unnecessary files from the hard drive.
Disk Defragmenting
A utility that regroups related pieces of files on the hard drive, enabling faster retrieved of the data.
Distributions (distros)
Linux download packages.
Error-Checking
A Windows utility that checks for the lost files and fragments as well as physical errors on a hard drive.
Event
The result of an action, such as a keystroke, mouse click, or signal to the printer, in the respective device to which the operating system responds.
Extension (file type)
In a file name, the three letters that follow the user-supplied file name after the dot (.); the extension identifies what kind of family of files the file belongs to, or which application should be used to read the file.
File
A collection of related pieces of information stored together for easy reference.
File Allocation Table (FAT)
An index of all decor numbers that the hard drive stores in a table to keep track of which sectors hold which files.
File Compression Utility
A program that takes out redundancies in a file in order to reduce the file size.
File Explorer
The main tool for finding, viewing, and managing the contents of your computer by showing the location and contents of every drive,folder,and file; called Windows Explorer prior to Windows 8.
File History
A Windows utility that automatically creates a duplicate of your libraries, desktop,contacts, and favorites and copies it to another storage device, such as an external hard drive.
File Management
The process by which humans or computer software provide organizational structure to a computers contents.
File Name
The first part of the label applied to a file; generally the name a user assigns to the file when saving it.
File Path
The exact location of a file, starting with the drive in which the file is located and including all folders, subfolders (if any), the file name, and the extension (C:/Users/username/Documents/Illustration/EBronte.jpg).
Folder
A collection of files stored on a computer.
Graphical User Interface (GUI)
Unlike the command- and menu-driven interfaces used in earlier software, GUIs display graphics and use the point-and-click technology of the mouse and cursor, making them much more user friendly.
Interrupt
A signal that tells the operating system that it’s in need of immediate attention.
Interrupt Handler
A special numerical code that prioritizes requests from various devices. These requests then are placed in the interrupt table in the computers primary memory.
Kernel (supervisor program)
The essential component of the operating system that’s responsible for managing the processor and all other components of the computer system. Because it stays in RAM the entire time the computer is powered on, the kernel is called memory resident.
Library
Introduced with Windows 7, a folder that’s used to display files from different locations as if they were all saved in a single folder, regardless of where they are actually stored in the file hierarchy.
Linux
An open-source operating system based on UNIX. Because of the stable nature of this operating system, it’s often used on web servers.
Mac OS
The first commercially available operating system to incorporate a graphical user interface (GUI) with user-friendly point-and-click technology.
Menu-Driven Interface
A user interface in which the user chooses a command from menus displayed on the screen.
Microsoft Account
Where you log in and input your password on Windows 8 computer; allows multiple users to share a computer while maintaining access to individual setting and preferences.
Multitask
The ability of an operating system to perform more than one process at a time.
Multiuser Operating System (network operating system)
An operating system that enables more than one user to access the computer system at one time by efficiently juggling all the requests from multiple users.
Operating System (OS)
The system software that controls the way in which a computer system functions, including the management of hardware, peripherals, and software.
Paging
The process of swapping data or instructions that have been placed in the swap file for later use back into active RAM. The contents of the hard drives swap file then become less active data or instructions.
Path Separator
The backslash mark () used by Microsoft Windows and DOS in file names. Mac files use a colon (:), and UNIX and Linux use the forward slash (/) as the path separator.
Pinning
The process through which you choose which applications are visible on the Windows Start screen.
Platform
The combination of a computers operating system and processor. The two most common platform types are the PC and the Apple.
Plug and Play (PnP)
The technology that enables the operating system, once it is booted up, to recognize automatically any new peripherals and to configure them to work with the system.
Power-On Self-Test (POST)
The first job the basic input/output system (BIOS) performs, ensuring that essential peripheral devices are attached and operational. This process consists of a test on the video card and video memory, a BIOS identification process, and a memory test to ensure memory chips are working properly.
Preemptive Multitasking
When the operating system processes the task assigned a higher priority before a task that has been assigned a lower priority.
Real-Time Operating System (RTOS)
A program with a specific purpose that must guarantee certain response times for particular computing tasks or else the machines application is useless. RTOS are found in many types of robotic equipment.
Recycle Bin
A folder on a Windows desktop in which deleted files from the hard drive are helped until permanently purged from the system.
Refresh Your PC
A new utility program in Windows 8 that attempts to diagnose and fix errors in your Windows system files that are causing your computer to behave improperly.
Registry
A portion of the hard drive containing all the different configurations (settings) used by the Windows operating system as well as by other applications.
Root Directory
The top level of the filling structure in a computer system. In Windows computers, the root directory of the hard drive is represented as C:.
Sector
A section of a hard drive platter, wedge-shaped from the center of the platter to the edge.
Source Code
The instructions programmers write in a higher-learning language.
UNIX
An operating system originally conceived in 1969 by Ken Thompson and Dennis Ritchie of AT&Ts Bell Labs. In 1974, the UNIX code was rewritten in the standard programming language C. Today there are various commercial version of UNIX
Spooler
A program that helps coordinate all print jobs being sent to the printer at the same time
Start Screen
The first interaction you have with the Windows operating system and the pace where you begin your computing activities
Swap File (Page File)
A temporary storage area on the operating system “swaps out” or moves the data or instructions from RAM that haven’t recently been used. This process takes place when more RAM space is needed
System Files
The main files of an operating system
System Restore
A utility in Windows that restores system settings used for restoring your system to a prior point in time.
System Restore Point
In Windows, a snapshot of your entire systems settings used for restoring your system to a prior point in time
System Software
The set of programs that enables a computers hardware devices and application software to work together; it includes the operating system and utility programs
Taskbar
In later versions of Windows operating systems, a feature that displays open and favorite applications for easy access
Task Manager
A Windows utility that shows programs currently running and permits you to exit nonresponsive programs when you click End Task
Thrasing
A condition of excessive paging in which the operating system becomes sluggish
Track
A concentric circle that serves as a storage area on a hard drive platter
User Interface
Part of the operating system that enables individuals to interact with the computer
Utility Program
A small program that perform many of the general housekeeping tasks for the computer, such as system maintenance and file compression
Virtual Memory
The space on the hard drive where the operating system stores data if there isn’t enough RAM to hold all of the programs you’re currently trying to run
Windows
An operating system by Microsoft that incorporates a user-friendly, graphical interface
Windows 8
Newest release of Microsoft operating system that provides, a new interface optimized for touchscreen devices
Windows 8 apps
Application specifically designed to run in the Windows 8 interface; these apps are displayed full screen, without borders or controls
Windows 8 Interface
New interface designed for Windows 8; features large type with clean, readable block images inspired by metropolitan service signs such as those found on bus stations and subways
Which of the following is NOT an example of a smartphone OS?
Linux
You are most likely to find a real-time operating system (RTOS)
In your automobile
Borrowing hard drive space to optimize RAM storage is known as
Virtual memory
An example of an open source OS is
Linux
If your computer can’t store all the required OS data in RAM, it can use temporary file on the hard drive to store data. This is known as a _____.
Swap
Each device attached to your computer needs a device driver to communicate with the OS
True
The first step of the boot process is the power on self test (POST)
False
Which of the following is NOT considered an accessibility utility?
System restore
Apps specifically designed for Windows 8
Run full screen
The Windows app used for file management is
File Explorer
If you place a document from your C: drive in the Recycle Bin in Windows
It remains on your hard drive until you empty the Recycle Bin
The _____ utility is used for detecting lost files and fragments of files on your hard drive
Error-checking
You can terminate nonresponsive programs with Task Manager
True
System restore points can only be created by Windows automatically on a regular schedule
False

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