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Types Of Operating System

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Types of OS on the basis of Owenership

Proprietary OS :

Proprietary software is computer software licensed under exclusive legal right of the copyright holder. The licensee is given the right to use the software under certain conditions, while restricted from other uses, such as modification, further distribution, or reverse engineering Windows, Mac, Solaris .

Open Source OS :

Open-source software (OSS) is computer software that is available in source code form: the source code and certain other rights normally reserved for copyright holders are provided under an open-source license that permits users to study, change, improve and at times also to distribute the software. Open source software is very often developed in a public, collaborative manner. For eg Ubuntu, BOSS/edu-BOSS. Synaptic package manger is used in linux to to install, remove and upgrade software packages and to add repositories.

EduBOSS, adapted from BOSS GNU/Linux, has educational applications that are useful for school students (primary and higher levels). Features include educational games, paint & graphic tools, typing tutor, and a host of tools and packages for basic learning, and also for teaching subjects like Maths, Science, Social etc. for higher classes. It also contains an eLearning editor which enables teachers to design, develop and publish web-based learning and teaching materials as well on-line quiz, tests and self-evaluation procedures.22 Indian languages support.

Types of OS based on Processing

Batch Processing System: Data or programs are collected grouped and processed at a later date

• Example of Use: Payroll, stock control and billing systems

Real-time Systems: Inputs immediately affect the outputs. Timing is critical i.e. they are capable of influencing the source of the data e.g. control where data from sensors is processed immediately and affect the outputs - controlling some device. Timing is critical and the term real-time control system.

•Example of Use: e.g. control of nuclear power plants, oil refining, chemical processing and traffic control systems, air.

Real-time transaction: Inputs immediately affect the outputs but timing is not critical. Each transaction is completed online as it arises e.g. booking systems - each booking is online and a database of bookings can be amended interactively and very quickly whilst another user is locked out so cannot double book or alter that record at the same time.

•Example of Use: Holiday and airline booking system

Difference between real- time and real-time transactions.

In real time, time is critical and delays can be catastrophic but in real-time transactions systems there is no time criticality. E.g. poor speeds in airline control would be dangerous but poor booking speeds would not be so crucial.


  • Online processing: Processing performed under the direct control of the CPU whilst the remains in communication user with the computer
  • Offline processing: Processing which is done away from CPU.
• Example of Use: e.g. batching together of clock cards, filling in OMR forms.
• Provides for interaction between the job and the user, which may influence the course of processing. Such systems may be single-user (e.g. a personal computer).


  • Multi-access on-line: Any users linked by workstations to a central computer such as a in network.
• Example of Use: Holiday or airline booking system. One person must be locked out when another is updating the file. This helps to prevent Double booking
  • Interactive processing: The user has to be present and program cannot proceed until there is some input from the user
• Example of Use: Select from a menu at ATM.
  • Distributed system: Processing is carried out independently in more than one location, with shared and but controlled access to some common facilities.
• Example of Use: Databases e.g. libraries
  • Multiprogramming: Ability to run many programs apparently at the same time.
• Example of Use: Mainframe systems. Each job is allocated a small amount of processing time (time slice) in turn.
  • Multi tasking: The ability to hold several programs in RAM at one time but the user switches between them.
• Example of Use: Usually uses GUI's. Facilitates import and export of data

Operating System can also be classified as:

Single User Systems: Provides a platform for only one user at a time. They are popularly associated with Desk Top operating system which run on standalone systems where no user accounts are required. Example: DOS.

Multi User Systems:Provides regulated access for a number of users by maintaining a database of known users.Refers to computer systems that support two or more simultaneous users. Another term for multi-user is time sharing. Ex: All mainframes andare multi-user systems. Example: Unix


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