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OPERATING SYSTEM AND THEIR INSTALLATION

Overview of Operating System

Operating system (OS) is system software that refers to the operating system and all utility programs that manage computer resources at a low level. Systems software includes compilers, loaders, linkers, and debuggers. It is the software that controls the operations of a computer system. It is a group of programs rather than one program. The operating system controls the hardware in the computer and peripherals, manages memory and files, and multi-tasking functions, and is the interface between applications programs and the computer. Utilities programs format, check and defragment disks. It sits between hardware and application software.

Operating system is the most important program that runs on a computer. Every general-purpose computer must have an operating system to run other programs. Operating systems perform basic tasks, such as recognizing input from the keyboard, sending output to the display screen, keeping track of files[1] and directories[2] (See fig.) on the disk, and controlling peripheral devices such as disk drives and printers.

For large systems, the operating system has even greater responsibilities and powers. It is like a traffic cop — it makes sure that different programs and users running at the same time do not interfere with each other. The operating system is also responsible for security, ensuring that unauthorized users do not access the system.

Operating systems can be classified as follows:

[1] (n.) A collection of data or information that has a name, called the filename. Almost all information stored in a computer must be in a file. There are many different types of files: data files, text files , program files, directory files, and so on. Different types of files store different types of information. For example, program files store programs, whereas text files store text.

 

[2] Directory: An organizational unit, or container, used to organize folders and files into a hierarchical structure. Directories contain bookkeeping information about files that are, figuratively speaking, beneath them in the hierarchy. You can think of a directory as a file cabinet that contains folders that contain files. Many graphical user interfaces use the term folder instead of directory.

Computer manuals often describe directories and file structures in terms of an inverted tree. The files and directories at any level are contained in the directory above them. To access a file, you may need to specify the names of all the directories above it. You do this by specifying a path.

The topmost directory in any file is called the root directory. A directory that is below another directory is called a subdirectory. A directory above a subdirectory is called the parent directory. Under DOS and Windows, the root directory is a back slash (\).

To read information from, or write information into, a directory, you must use an operating system command. You cannot directly edit directory files. For example, the DIR command in DOS reads a directory file and displays its contents.

Multi-user

Refers to computer systems that support two or more simultaneous users. All mainframes and minicomputers are multi-user systems, but most personal computers and workstations are not. Another term for multi-user is time-sharing[1]. Some operating systems permit hundreds or even thousands of concurrent users.

Multiprocessing

Refers to a computer system’s ability to support more than one process (program) at the same time. Multiprocessing operating systems enable several programs to run concurrently. UNIX is one of the most widely used multiprocessing systems, but there are many others, including OS/2 for high-end PCs. Multiprocessing systems are much more complicated than single-process systems because the operating system must allocate resources to competing processes in a reasonable manner.

It also refers to the utilization of multiple CPUs in a single computer system. That is it supports running a program on more than one CPU. This is also called parallel processing.

Multitasking

The ability to execute more than one task at the same time, a task being a program. That is it allows more than one program to run concurrently. The terms multitasking and multiprocessing are often used interchangeably, although multiprocessing implies that more than one CPU is involved.

In multitasking, only one CPU is involved, but it switches from one program to another so quickly that it gives the appearance of executing all of the programs at the same time.

There are two basic types of multitasking: preemptive and cooperative. In preemptive multitasking, the operating system parcels out CPU time slices to each program. In cooperative multitasking, each program can control the CPU for as long as it needs it. If a program is not using the CPU, however, it can allow another program to use it temporarily. OS/2, Windows 95, Windows NT, the Amiga operating system and UNIX use preemptive multitasking, whereas Microsoft Windows 3.x and the MultiFinder (for Macintosh computers) use cooperative multitasking.

Multithreading

The ability of an operating system to execute different parts of a program, called threads[2], simultaneously. It allows different parts of a single program to run concurrently. The programmer must carefully design the program in such a way that all the threads can run at the same time without interfering with each other.

Real time

Responds to input instantly. Occurring immediately. The term is used to describe a number of different computer features. For example, real-time operating systems are systems that respond to input immediately. They are used for such tasks as navigation, in which the computer must react to a steady flow of new information without interruption. Most general-purpose operating systems are not real-time because they can take a few seconds, or even minutes, to react. Such as DOS and UNIX, are not real-time.

Real time can also refer to events simulated by a computer at the same speed that they would occur in real life. In graphics animation, for example, a real-time program would display objects moving across the screen at the same speed that they would actually move.

[1] Time-Sharing: Refers to the concurrent use of a computer by more than one user — users share the computer’s time. Time sharing is synonymous with multi-user. Almost all mainframes and minicomputers are time-sharing systems, but most personal computers and workstations are not.

[2] Thread: a part of a program that can execute independently of other parts. Operating systems that support multithreading enable programmers to design programs whose threaded parts can execute concurrently.

[1] Time-Sharing: Refers to the concurrent use of a computer by more than one user — users share the computer’s time. Time sharing is synonymous with multi-user. Almost all mainframes and minicomputers are time-sharing systems, but most personal computers and workstations are not.

[1] Thread: a part of a program that can execute independently of other parts. Operating systems that support multithreading enable programmers to design programs whose threaded parts can execute concurrently.

Operating systems provide a software platform on top of which other programs, called application programs, can run. The application programs must be written to run on top of a particular operating system. Your choice of operating system, therefore, determines to a great extent the applications you can run. For PCs, the most popular operating systems are DOS, OS/2, and Windows, but others are available, such as Linux.

As a user, you normally interact with the operating system through a set of commands. For example, the DOS operating system contains commands such as COPY and RENAME for copying files and changing the names of files, respectively. The commands are accepted and executed by a part of the operating system called the command processor or command line interpreter. Graphical user interfaces allow you to enter commands by pointing and clicking at objects that appear on the screen.

There are several operating systems. Out of them DOS, Windows, UNIX, Linux and Mac OS are most popular operating system.

What is Kernel of an Operating System?

The central module of an operating system. It is the part of the operating system that loads first, and it remains in main memory. Because it stays in memory, it is important for the kernel to be as small as possible while still providing all the essential services required by other parts of the operating system and applications. Typically, the kernel is responsible for memory management, process and task management, and disk management. It is also responsible for initializing device drivers at bootup that are necessary to get the operating system up and running.

kernel32.dll

Kernel32.dll is the 32-bit dynamic link library found in the Windows operating system kernel. It handles memory management, input/output operations, and interrupts. When Windows boots up, kernel32.dll is loaded into a protected memory space so other applications do not take that space over.

On occasion, though, users may encounter the “invalid page fault” error.

This error occurs when a program or application tries to access kernel32.dll’s protected memory space. Sometimes the error is caused by one particular program or application, and other times it is provoked by multiple files and applications.

If the problem results from running one application, then the application needs to be replaced. If the problem occurs when accessing multiple files and applications, the corruption is probably caused by faulty hardware.

Overview of DOS

(1) Acronym for disk operating system. The term DOS can refer to any operating system, but it is most often used as a shorthand for MS-DOS (Microsoft disk operating system). Originally developed by Microsoft for IBM, MS-DOS was the standard operating system for IBM-compatible personal computers.

The initial versions of DOS were very simple and resembled another operating system called CP/M. Subsequent versions have became increasingly sophisticated as they incorporated features of minicomputer operating systems. However, DOS is still a 16-bit operating system and does not support multiple users or multitasking.

For some time, it has been widely acknowledged that DOS is insufficient for modern computer applications. Microsoft Windows helped alleviate some problems, but still, it sat on top of DOS and relied on DOS for many services. Even Windows 95 sat on top of DOS. Newer operating systems, such as Windows NT and OS/2 Warp, do not rely on DOS to the same extent, although they can execute DOS-based programs. It is expected that as these operating systems gain market share, DOS will eventually disappear. In the meantime, Caldera, Inc. markets a version of DOS called DR-OpenDOS that extends MS-DOS in significant ways.

 

Some Useful MS-DOS Commands:

 

To start the command prompt click Start then Run; write cmd in the Open box and click OK.

  • If you need to clear the screen, use “CLS” Command-

C:\>CLS ¿

  • To see the list of files in a d=Directory, use “DIR” Command-

C:\> DIR ¿

  • To see the list of files page by page, or in wide screen –

C:\> DIR/P ¿              or,                    C:\> DIR/W ¿

  • To Create Directory named test, use “MD” Command-

C:\> MD ¿

  • To change the Directory named Test or Windows use “CD” Command-

C:\> CD test ¿            or                     C:\> CD  WP ¿

  • To copy files from one directory to another directory use “COPY” Command-

C:\> COPY <Source file name> <Destination> ¿

C:\> COPY C:\autoexec.bat C:\Test  ¿

  • To format a disk or partition us FORMAT command

C:\> FORMAT <Drive letter:> ¿

C:\> FORMAT A: ¿

Overview of Microsoft Windows

A family of operating systems for personal computers. Windows dominates the personal computer world, running, by some estimates, on 90% of all personal computers. The remaining 10% are mostly Macintosh computers. Like the Macintosh operating environment, Windows provides a graphical user interface (GUI), virtual memory management, multitasking, and support for many peripheral devices.

Windows 95

A major release of the Microsoft Windows operating system released in 1995. Windows 95 represents a significant advance over its precursor, Windows 3.1. In addition to sporting a new user interface, Windows 95 also includes a number of important internal improvements. Perhaps most important, it supports 32-bit[1] applications, which means that applications written specifically for this operating system should run much faster. And although Windows 95 can run older Windows and DOS applications, it has essentially removed DOS as the underlying platform. This has meant removal of many of the old DOS limitations, such as 640K of main memory and 8-character filenames.

OSR2

Short for OEM Service Release 2, a new version of Windows 95 released at the end of 1996. Also called Windows 95b, OSR 2 provides a number of new features and bug fixes. Probably the most important new feature is FAT32, a new version of the file allocation table. FAT32 supports disk drives up to 2 terabytes and yields better storage efficiency due to smaller clusters.

OSR 2 is only available bundled in new computers. You cannot obtain it as an upgrade to older versions of Windows 95.

[1] 32-bit: Refers to the number of bits that can be processed or transmitted in parallel, or the number of bits used for single element in a data format. The term is often applied to the following:

Microprocessor: indicates the width of the registers. A 32-bit microprocessor can process data and memory addresses that are represented by 32 bits.

 Bus: indicates the number of wires in the bus. A 32-bit bus transmits 32 bits in parallel.

 Graphics device, such as a scanner or digital camera : specifies the number of bits used to represent each pixel. Typically 24 bits are used for color and the remaining 8 bits are used for control information.

 Operating system: refers primarily to the number of bits used to represent memory addresses.

[1] 32-bit: Refers to the number of bits that can be processed or transmitted in parallel, or the number of bits used for single element in a data format. The term is often applied to the following:

Microprocessor: indicates the width of the registers. A 32-bit microprocessor can process data and memory addresses that are represented by 32 bits.

 Bus: indicates the number of wires in the bus. A 32-bit bus transmits 32 bits in parallel.

 Graphics device, such as a scanner or digital camera : specifies the number of bits used to represent each pixel. Typically 24 bits are used for color and the remaining 8 bits are used for control information.

 Operating system: refers primarily to the number of bits used to represent memory addresses.

Windows 98

Originally it was called Memphis, and then Windows 97, but Microsoft changed the name when it realized that it was going to miss its target 1997 release date.

Windows 98 offers support for a number of new technologies, including FAT32, AGP, MMX, USB, DVD, and ACPI[1]. Its most visible feature, though, is the Active Desktop, which integrates the Web browser (Internet Explorer) with the operating system. From the user’s point of view, there is no difference between accessing a document residing locally on the user’s hard disk or on a Web server halfway around the world.

Windows 2000

A product in Microsoft’s Windows line of operating systems. There are four versions of Windows 2000:

  • Professional — an operating system for business desktop and laptop systems. It is used to run software applications, connect to Internet and intranet sites, and access files, printers, and network resources.
  • Server — both a Web server and an office server. Windows 2000 Server lets users build Web applications and connect to the Internet.
  • Advanced Server — an operating for line-of-business applications and e-commerce. It contains all the functionality of the standard version of Windows 2000 Server, plus additional features for applications that require higher levels of scalability and availability.
  • Datacenter Server — developed to work in high-traffic computer networks, it is designed for enterprises that need reliable high-end drivers and software. It supports up to 64-way SMP (Symmetric Multiprocessing) and up to 64 GB of physical memory.

Windows 2000 is sometimes abbreviated as W2K.

Windows NT

A version of the Windows operating system. Windows NT (New Technology) is a 32-bit operating system that supports preemptive multitasking.

There are actually two versions of Windows NT: Windows NT Server, designed to act as a server in networks, and Windows NT Workstation for stand-alone or client workstations.

Windows XP

An operating system introduced in 2001 from Microsoft’s Windows family of operating systems, the previous version of Windows being Windows Me. Microsoft called the release its most important product since Windows 95. Along with a redesigned look and feel to the user interface, the new operating system is built on the Windows 2000 kernel, giving the user a more stable and reliable environment than previous versions of Windows. Windows XP comes in two versions, Home and Professional. The company has focused on mobility for both editions, including plug and play features for connecting to wireless networks. The operating system also utilizes the 802.11x wireless security standard.

The “XP” in Windows XP stands for “eXPerience.”

 

Windows XP Professional X64 Edition

The initial target audience for Windows XP Professional x64 Edition is anyone who is running into performance and memory limits on their 32-bit systems, for example, developers, media artists, CAD/CAM, scientific workstations and enthusiasts who are running the most demanding applications, and who require the capabilities of the Professional Edition of Windows XP. Windows XP Home Edition is targeted at the home user and has fewer features. At this point, especially with

[1] ACPI: Short for Advanced Configuration and Power Interface, a power management specification developed by Intel, Microsoft, and Toshiba. ACPI, which will be part of the next version of Windows, enables the operating system to control the amount of power given to each device attached to the computer. With ACPI, the operating system can turn off peripheral devices, such as a CD-ROM players, when they’re not in use. As another example, ACPI will enable manufacturers to produce computers that automatically power up as soon as you touch the keyboard.

[1] ACPI: Short for Advanced Configuration and Power Interface, a power management specification developed by Intel, Microsoft, and Toshiba. ACPI, which will be part of the next version of Windows, enables the operating system to control the amount of power given to each device attached to the computer. With ACPI, the operating system can turn off peripheral devices, such as a CD-ROM players, when they’re not in use. As another example, ACPI will enable manufacturers to produce computers that automatically power up as soon as you touch the keyboard.

Windows Vista

Windows Vista is a line of operating systems developed by Microsoft for use on personal computers, including home and business desktops, laptops, Tablet PCs, and media center PCs. Prior to its announcement on July 22, 2005, Windows Vista was known by its codename Longhorn. Development was completed on November 8, 2006; over the following three months it was released in stages to computer hardware and software manufacturers, business customers, and retail channels. On January 30, 2007, it was released worldwide, and was made available for purchase and download from Microsoft’s website. The release of Windows Vista comes more than five years after the introduction of its predecessor, Windows XP, the longest time span between successive releases of Microsoft Windows.

Windows Vista contains many changes and new features, including an updated graphical user interface and visual style dubbed Windows Aero, improved searching features, new multimedia creation tools such as Windows DVD Maker, and redesigned networking, audio, print, and display sub-systems. Vista also aims to increase the level of communication between machines on a home network, using peer-to-peer technology to simplify sharing files and digital media between computers and devices. Windows Vista includes version 3.0 of the .NET Framework, which aims to make it significantly easier for software developers to write applications than with the traditional Windows API.

Microsoft’s primary stated objective with Windows Vista, however, has been to improve the state of security in the Windows operating system. One common criticism of Windows XP and its predecessors has been their commonly exploited security vulnerabilities and overall susceptibility to malware, viruses and buffer overflows. In light of this, Microsoft chairman Bill Gates announced in early 2002 a company-wide “Trustworthy Computing initiative” which aims to incorporate security work into every aspect of software development at the company. Microsoft stated that it prioritized improving the security of Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 above finishing Windows Vista, thus delaying its completion.

While these new features and security improvements have garnered positive reviews, Vista has also been the target of much criticism and negative press. Criticism of Windows Vista has targeted high system requirements, its more restrictive licensing terms, the inclusion of a number of new digital rights management technologies aimed at restricting the copying of protected digital media, lack of compatibility with certain pre-Vista hardware and software, and the number of authorization prompts for User Account Control. As a result of these and other issues, Vista has seen adoption and satisfaction rates lower than Windows XP.

New or improved features in Vista

End-user features

The appearance of Windows Explorer has changed since Windows XP.

  • Windows Aero: The new hardware-based graphical user interface is named Windows Aero, which Jim Allchin has said is an acronym for Authentic, Energetic, Reflective, and Open. The new interface is intended to be cleaner and more aesthetically pleasing than those of previous Windows, including new transparencies, live thumbnails, live icons, and animations, thus providing a new level of eye candy. Laptop users report however that battery life is shortened with the feature enabled.
  • Windows Shell: The new Windows shell is significantly different from Windows XP, offering a new range of organization, navigation, and search capabilities. Windows Explorer’s task pane has been removed, integrating the relevant task options into the toolbar. A “Favorite links” pane has been added, enabling one-click access to common directories. The address bar has been replaced with a breadcrumb navigation system. The preview pane allows users to see thumbnails of various files and view the contents of documents. The details pane shows information such as file size and type, and allows viewing and editing of embedded tags in supported file formats. The Start menu has changed as well; it no longer uses ever-expanding boxes when navigating through Programs. The word “Start” itself has been removed in favor of a blue Windows Orb (also called “Pearl”).
  • Instant Search (also known as search as you type) : Windows Vista features a new way of searching called Instant Search, which is significantly faster and more in-depth (content-based) than the search features found in any of the previous versions of Windows.
  • Windows Sidebar: A transparent panel anchored to the side of the screen where a user can place Desktop Gadgets, which are small applets designed for a specialized purpose (such as displaying the weather or sports scores). Gadgets can also be placed on other parts of the desktop.
  • Windows Internet Explorer 7: New user interface, tabbed browsing, RSS, a search box, improved printing, Page Zoom, Quick Tabs (thumbnails of all open tabs), Anti-Phishing filter, a number of new security protection features, Internationalized Domain Name support (IDN), and improved web standards support. IE7 in Windows Vista runs in isolation from other applications in the operating system (protected mode); exploits and malicious software are restricted from writing to any location beyond Temporary Internet Files without explicit user consent.
  • Windows Media Player 11, a major revamp of Microsoft’s program for playing and organizing music and video. New features in this version include word wheeling (or “search as you type”), a new GUI for the media library, photo display and organization, the ability to share music libraries over a network with other Vista machines, Xbox 360 integration, and support for other Media Center Extenders.
  • Backup and Restore Center: Includes a backup and restore application that gives users the ability to schedule periodic backups of files on their computer, as well as recovery from previous backups. Backups are incremental, storing only the changes each time, minimizing disk usage. It also features Complete PC Backup (available only in Ultimate, Business, and Enterprise versions) which backs up an entire computer as an image onto a hard disk or DVD. Complete PC Backup can automatically recreate a machine setup onto new hardware or hard disk in case of any hardware failures. Complete PC Restore can be initiated from within Windows Vista or from the Windows Vista installation CD in the event the PC is so corrupt that it cannot start up normally from the hard disk.
  • Windows Mail: A replacement for Outlook Express that includes a new mail store that improves stability, and features integrated Instant Search. It has the Phishing Filter like IE7 and Junk mail filtering that is enhanced through regular updates via Windows Update.
  • Windows Calendar is a new calendar and task application.
  • Windows Photo Gallery, a photo and movie library management application. It can import from digital cameras, tag and rate individual items, adjust colors and exposure, create and display slideshows (with pan and fade effects) and burn slideshows to DVD.
  • Windows DVD Maker, a companion program to Windows Movie Maker that provides the ability to create video DVDs based on a user’s content. Users can design a DVD with title, menu, video, soundtrack, pan and zoom motion effects on pictures or slides.
  • Windows Media Center, which was previously exclusively bundled as a separate version of Windows XP, known as Windows XP Media Center Edition, has been incorporated into the Home Premium and Ultimate editions of Windows Vista.
  • Games and Games Explorer: Games included with Windows have been modified to showcase Vista’s graphics capabilities. New games are Chess Titans, Mahjong Titans and Purble Place. A new Games Explorer special folder holds shortcuts and information to all games on the user’s computer.
  • Windows Mobility Center is a control panel that centralizes the most relevant information related to mobile computing (brightness, sound, battery level / power scheme selection, wireless network, screen orientation, presentation settings, etc.).
  • Windows Meeting Space replaces NetMeeting. Users can share applications (or their entire desktop) with other users on the local network, or over the Internet using peer-to-peer technology (higher versions than Starter and Home Basic can take advantage of hosting capabilities, Starter and Home Basic editions are limited to “join” mode only)
  • Shadow Copy automatically creates daily backup copies of files and folders. Users can also create “shadow copies” by setting a System Protection Point using the System Protection tab in the System control panel. The user can be presented multiple versions of a file throughout a limited history and be allowed to restore, delete, or copy those versions. This feature is available only in the Business, Enterprise, and Ultimate editions of Windows Vista and is inherited from Windows Server 2003.
  • Windows Update: Software and security updates have been simplified, now operating solely via a control panel instead of as a web application. Windows Mail’s spam filter and Windows Defender’s definitions are updated automatically via Windows Update. Users who choose the recommended setting for Automatic Updates will have the latest drivers installed and available when they add a new device.
  • Parental controls: Allows administrators to control which websites, programs and games each standard user can use and install. This feature is not included in the Business or Enterprise editions of Vista.
  • Windows SideShow: Enables the auxiliary displays on newer laptops or on supported Windows Mobile devices. It is meant to be used to display device gadgets while the computer is on or off.
  • Speech recognition is integrated into Vista. It features a redesigned user interface and configurable command-and-control commands. Unlike the Office 2003 version, which works only in Office and WordPad, Speech Recognition in Windows Vista works for any accessible application. In addition, it currently supports several languages: British and American English, Spanish, French, German, Chinese (Traditional and Simplified) and Japanese.
  • New fonts, including several designed for screen reading, and improved Chinese (Yahei, JhengHei), Japanese (Meiryo) and Korean (Malgun) fonts. ClearType has also been enhanced and enabled by default.
  • Problem Reports and Solutions, a control panel which allows users to view previously sent problems and any solutions or additional information that is available.
  • Improved audio controls allow the system-wide volume or volume of individual audio devices and even individual applications to be controlled separately. New audio functionalities such as Room Correction, Bass Management, Speaker Fill and Headphone virtualization have also been incorporated.
  • Windows System Assessment Tool is a tool used to benchmark system performance. Software such as games can retrieve this rating and modify its own behavior at runtime to improve performance. The benchmark tests CPU, RAM, 2-D and 3-D graphics acceleration, graphics memory and hard disk space.
  • Windows Ultimate Extras: The Ultimate edition of Windows Vista provides, via Windows Update, access to some additional features. These are a collection of additional MUI language packs, Texas Hold ‘Em (a Poker game), BitLocker and EFS enhancements which allow users to backup their encryption key online in a Digital Locker, and Windows Dreamscene, which enables the use of videos in MPEG and WMV formats as the desktop background. On April 21st 2008, Microsoft launched two more Ultimate Extras; a new Windows sound scheme, and a content pack for Dreamscene.
  • Reliability and Performance Monitor includes various tools for tuning and monitoring system performance and resources activities of CPU, disks, network, memory and other resources. It shows the operations on files, the opened connections, etc.
  • Disk Management: The Logical Disk Manager in Windows Vista supports shrinking and expanding volumes on-the-fly.

Removed features

Some notable Windows XP features and components have been replaced or removed in Windows Vista, including Windows Messenger, the network Messenger Service, HyperTerminal, MSN Explorer, Active Desktop, and the replacement of NetMeeting with Windows Meeting Space. Windows Vista also does not include the Windows XP “Luna” visual theme, or most of the classic color schemes which have been part of Windows since the Windows 3.x era. The “Hardware profiles” startup feature has also been removed, along with support for older motherboard technologies like the EISA bus, APM and Game port support (though game port support can be enabled by applying an older driver). IP over FireWire (TCP/IP over IEEE 1394) has been removed as well. The IPX/SPX Protocol has also been removed, although it can be enabled by a third-party plugin.

Hardware requirements Windows Vista

Hardware “Vista Capable” “Vista Premium Ready”
Processor 800 MHz 1 GHz
Memory 512 MB RAM 1 GB RAM
Graphics card DirectX 9 capable DirectX 9 capable GPU with Hardware Pixel Shader v2.0 and WDDM 1.0 driver support
Graphics memory 32 MB RAM 128 MB RAM supports up to 2,756,000 total pixels (e.g. 1920 × 1200) or 512 MB+ for greater resolutions such as 2560×1600
HDD capacity 20 GB 40 GB
HDD free space 15 GB 15 GB
Other drives DVD-ROM DVD-ROM
Audio Audio output HD Audio output

Other Operating Systems

OS/2

An operating system for PCs developed originally by Microsoft Corporation and IBM, but sold and managed solely by IBM. OS/2 is compatible with DOS and Windows, which means that it can run all DOS and Windows programs. However, programs written specifically to run under OS/2 will not run under DOS or Windows.

Since its introduction in the late 80s, OS/2 has traveled a particularly rocky road. The first releases were hampered by a number of technical and marketing problems. Then Microsoft abandoned the project in favor of its own operating system solution, Microsoft Windows. That break spawned a feud between the two computer giants that is still being played out in many arenas.

 

UNIX

Pronounced yoo-niks, a popular multi-user, multitasking operating system developed at Bell Labs in the early 1970s. Created by just a handful of programmers, UNIX was designed to be a small, flexible system used exclusively by programmers.

UNIX was one of the first operating systems to be written in a high-level programming language, namely C. This meant that it could be installed on virtually any computer for which a C compiler existed. This natural portability combined with its low price made it a popular choice among universities. (It was inexpensive because antitrust regulations prohibited Bell Labs from marketing it as a full-scale product.)

Bell Labs distributed the operating system in its source language form, so anyone who obtained a copy could modify and customize it for his own purposes. By the end of the 1970s, dozens of different versions of UNIX were running at various sites.

After its breakup in 1982, AT&T began to market UNIX in earnest. It also began the long and difficult process of defining a standard version of UNIX.

Due to its portability, flexibility, and power, UNIX has become a leading operating system for workstations. Historically, it has been less popular in the personal computer market.

Today, the trademarked “Unix” and the “Single UNIX Specification” interface are owned by The Open Group. An operating system that is certified by The Open Group to use the UNIX trademark conforms to the Single UNIX Specification.

According to The Open Group’s Web site, “As the owner of the UNIX trademark, The Open Group has separated the UNIX trademark from any actual code stream itself, thus allowing multiple implementations. Since the introduction of the Single UNIX Specification, there has been a single, open, consensus specification that defines the requirements for a conformant UNIX system. There is also a mark, or brand, that is used to identify those products that have been certified as conforming to the Single UNIX Specification, initially UNIX 93, followed subsequently by UNIX 95, UNIX 98 and now UNIX 03. Both the specification and the UNIX trade mark are managed and held in trust for the industry by The Open Group.”

Linux

Pronounced lee-nucks or lih-nucks. A freely-distributable open source[1] operating system that runs on a number of hardware platforms. The Linux kernel was developed mainly by Linus Torvalds. Because it’s free, and because it runs on many platforms, including PCs and Macintoshes, Linux has become an extremely popular alternative to proprietary operating systems.

Linux is an operating system that was initially created as a hobby by a young student, Linus Torvalds, at the University of Helsinki in Finland. Linus had an interest in Minix, a small UNIX system, and decided to develop a system that exceeded the Minix standards. He began his work in 1991 when he released version 0.02 and worked steadily until 1994 when version 1.0 of the Linux Kernel was released. The kernel, at the heart of all Linux systems, is developed and released under the GNU General Public License and its source code is freely available to everyone. It is this kernel that forms the base around which a Linux operating system is developed. There are now literally hundreds of companies and organizations and an equal number of individuals that have released their own versions of operating systems based on the Linux kernel.

Apart from the fact that it’s freely distributed, Linux’s functionality, adaptability and robustness, has made it the main alternative for proprietary Unix and Microsoft operating systems. IBM, Hewlett-Packard and other giants of the computing world have embraced Linux and support its ongoing development.

Mac OS

The official name of the Macintosh operating system. Earlier versions were called System x.x, where x.x were the version numbers. With the release of Mac OS 8, however, Apple dropped the System moniker.

How to Install Windows 98

To install windows98, you will need:

  • A bootable CD or Floppy disk that contains fdisk program for working in DOS environment (to partition and format only) and /or A bootable Windows98 Operating System Setup CDROM;
  • Change the boot disk priority in the BIOS Setup program to the drive that contain boot information;

Minimum Hardware Requirements to Install Windows 98

The minimum hardware requirements include:

  • 486DX 66-MHz or faster processor (Pentium recommended);
  • 16 megabytes (MB) of memory (24 MB recommended);
  • 195 MB of free hard disk space (the required space may vary from 120 MB to 295 MB, depending on your computer’s configuration and the options you choose to install)
  • CD-ROM or DVD-ROM drive
  • 5-inch high-density floppy disk drive
  • Video adapter and monitor that support VGA or higher resolution
  • Microsoft Mouse or compatible pointing device

Windows 98 Setup can be divided into the following phases:

  1. Pre-file copy phase
  2. File copy phase
  3. Enumeration/detection phase
  4. Configuring system settings
  5. Configuring Internet Explorer settings

Pre-File Copy Phase:

During this phase, Windows 98 Setup runs ScanDisk on the hard disk, sets up the Windows 98 Setup Wizard, determines the folder in which to install Windows 98, prompt you for your CD Key number, and determines the components to be installed with Windows 98.

Windows 98 Setup first displays the End User License Agreement (EULA). When you accept the EULA, Windows 98 Setup prompts you for your CD Key number. The CD Key number is a twenty-five digit value located on the back of the Windows 98 CD-ROM sleeve.

When you run Windows 98 Setup from MS-DOS that is C: prompt, you are prompted for the folder in which to install Windows 98.

Windows 98 Setup then runs ScanReg to test the integrity of the registry. ScanReg also makes a backup copy of the registry at this point.

You are then prompted to save system files from the previous operating system. Saving these files enables to uninstall Windows 98. Note that if you convert your hard disk to FAT32, you no longer have the option to uninstall Windows 98.

Windows 98 Setup then determines what components to install based on the following criteria:

  • If you run Windows 98 Setup from MS-DOS you are prompted to perform a Typical, Portable, Compact, or Custom Setup.

After you select a Setup option, you are prompted for the locale for the Internet channels.

You are then prompted to create a Windows 98 Startup disk. After you create a Windows 98 startup disk, Setup proceeds to the file copy phase.

File Copy Phase

During this phase, Windows 98 Setup copies the files needed to complete Setup. This involves copying files from the Windows 98 CD-ROM or shared network drive to your local hard disk.

Enumeration/Detection Phase

During this phase, Windows 98 Setup determines what hardware components are installed in your computer. This phase requires you to restart your computer either once or twice, depending on the type of hardware in your computer. This Setup phase can be identified by the Setting Up Hardware screen.

Configuring System Settings

During this phase, Windows 98 Setup configures Control Panel, prompts you for the appropriate time zone, and finalizes system settings in preparation for the first time Windows 98 is started.

Configuring Internet Explorer Settings

During this phase, which occurs when Windows 98 Setup restarts for the last time, Internet Explorer configures personal settings and any other optional Internet utilities installed with Windows 98.

After you partition and format your hard disk, you may start installing Windows 98 using the following steps:

  1. Insert the Windows 98 Startup disk in the floppy disk drive, and then restart your computer. When you see POST Screen press F2 or DEL key to go BIOS. Select the Boot option — BOOT FROM CDROM.
  2. When the Windows 98 Startup menu is displayed, choose the Start computer with CD-ROM support option, and then press ENTER.
  3. If CD-ROM support is provided by the generic drivers on the Startup disk, you receive one of the following messages, where X is the drive letter that is assigned to your CD-ROM drive:

Drive X: = Driver MSCD001
Drive X: = Driver OEMCD001

NOTE: If your CD-ROM drive is not available after you boot from the Windows 98 Startup disk, install the CD-ROM drivers that are included with your CD-ROM drive. For information about how to obtain and install the most current driver for your CD-ROM drive, view the documentation that is included with your device, or contact your hardware manufacturer.

  1. Insert the Windows 98 CD-ROM in the CD-ROM drive, type the following command at a command prompt, and then press ENTER

X:\setup

where X is the drive letter that is assigned to your CD-ROM drive.

  1. When you receive the following message, press ENTER, and then follow the instructions on the screen to complete the Setup procedure:

Please wait while the Setup initializes. Setup is now going to perform a routine check on your system.

To continue press Enter and follow the instruction of each window.

[1] Generically, open source refers to a program in which the source code is available to the general public for use and/or modification from its original design free of charge, i.e., open. Open source code is typically created as a collaborative effort in which programmers improve upon the code and share the changes within the community. Open source sprouted in the technological community as a response to proprietary software owned by corporations.

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