Operating system is one of the most important parts of computer. It is a software which runs all other types of software and programmes but it also manages hardware, memory, storage and more. Operating system is what makes a computer useful.
Popular Operating Systems
There are many different operating systems but most computers are run by one of the following three operating systems:
Developed in the 1980s (the first version was launched in 1985) by Microsoft, Windows is the most popular and the most commonly used operating system in the world. Pre-loaded on most new computers, Microsoft’s operating system is estimated to run approximately 90% of all computers. Several versions (in several editions) have been released since the 1.0 version, while the newest version (Window 10) is expected to be released in 2015.
First released in January 1984 as the “System”, Mac OS is a series of operating systems that were developed by Apple Inc. for their Macintosh computers or Macs. Unlike Windows operating system that can be bought independently from the computer and installed on virtually any computer, Mac OS is available only with Macs. Since these are in the upper price range, Apple’s operating system has much smaller market share than Windows. Mac OS is estimated to run 7.5% to 8% of all computers.
Linux was first released in 1991 as a free and open-source software. It is a very popular alternative to both Windows and Mac OS, and has also served as a basis for many other operating systems including Android which is currently the No. 1 operating system for smartphones and tablets. Various versions of Linux - with the most popular being Mint, Debian and Fedora - are currently used by approximately 2% of all computer users.
Multi-User, Real-Time, Multitasking …
Operating systems can be classified into different types, with some of the most common being:
- Multi-user. This type of operating system allows multiple users to run programmes simultaneously.
- Real-time. If the operating systems is classified as real-time, it means that it can process the incoming information and responds accordingly almost instantly.
- Multitasking. This type allows multiple programmes to operate at the same time
- Other. Examples include distributed, embedded, single-user, single task and templated operating systems.