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Operating System Paper

1473 words - 6 pages

Operating System Paper

Introduction
Operating Systems have come a long way since the times of a separate windows system and Disk Operating System (DOS). Now, both systems are combined which made DOS obsolete. According to Capron (2001), “An operating system is a set of programs that lies between applications software and computer hardware; it is the fundamental software that controls access to all other software and hardware resources” (p. 65). Operating systems have three main functions: to manage computer resources, to establish user interface and to execute and provide services for application software. The computer would just be useless machine with no direction or purpose without an operating system. According Nickerson (2001), “The most important system software is the operating system because without it computers would be extremely difficult to use” (p. 31).
Operating System Compatibility in the Workplace
Watts-Smith and Cheng (2004) define compatibility as, “The ability of all hardware and all software in one unit, such as a computer, to work together without difficulty” (no pg.). As with a perfect world, there is no such thing as a perfect computer or software. There will always be compatibility issues with their set of patches and service packs to assist in the smooth operation of a computer information system. In the case of operating systems, upgrades always bring their host of compatibility problems or issues. While most compatibility issues go relatively unnoticed to the average computer user, the ones that are noticeable are extreme in nature. Too many times, previous programs which worked smoothly with the previous operating systems develop problems in speed, memory or even overall usability when upgraded to a newer version. For example, there was a large compatibility issue at work with Microsoft Office Access when the systems at work were upgraded from Windows NT to Windows 2000. An Access database that was critical to our work, which worked perfectly with Windows NT was no longer operable with Windows 2000. Therefore, a single computer had to be reconverted back to Windows NT in order to continue to work with this Access database. If this was not allowed, a vast wealth of information would have been lost forever. Now that the Government has approved the use of Windows XP, these compatibility issues are becoming less and less.
Operating system of Choice
I prefer Windows XP Professional. There seems to be less compatibility issues with Windows XP than with Windows 2000 or Windows NT. In fact, the big problem which I described in one of my discussion questions was when my workplace tried to apply a service pack without testing it, happened with Windows 2000. In my opinion, Windows 2000 was a big mistake for Microsoft, which led to the immediate development and implementation of Windows XP Professional and Home editions. This nightmare cost our Government a lot of time and money. Basically, everyone’s...

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