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CS 120-Module4.pdf - CS 120: Introduction to Computing in...

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CS 120: Introduction to Computing in AviationMODULE 4: SOFTWARE
Content OverviewDefinition of SoftwareFirmwareOperating SystemsDevice DriversReal-Time Operating SystemsUtility SoftwareApplication SoftwareSoftware TroubleshootingData, Directory Structure, and File Systems2
What is Software?Everything between the physical computer and the outside world (input or output)Most commonly refers to things that provideinstructions to tell the hardware what to do (executables)By technical definition, includes documentation, digital media, and other data that is used by computing hardwareCan be loosely categorized into:System softwaredirectly operates computer hardwareApplication softwareinterfaces with the system software to make the computer do things of use to the end user (substantially more on this next module)3
TYPES OF SOFTWARE4
FirmwareFirmware is a type of software that resides directly on the hardware, used for embedded computers and within mobile devices and many computer peripherals.Firmware is contained in non-volatile memory; in PC terms, that means on read-only memory (ROM) instead of RAM.The purpose of firmware is to provide the fundamental control instructionsfor the device.A substantial majority of modern firmware canand shouldbe updated regularly during the product’s lifespan.Each hardware component has its own firmware; it is not stored in central common memory. 5
Boot LoaderA piece of firmware stored in the ROM on the CMOS that loads other data and programs into the RAM so that the computer can start.On a home PC, this is most often the BIOS(basic input/output system).First loads the power-on self test (POST) to check all connected devices and see if they’re available.Then checks the devices by their boot order to see if they’re available, and proceeds to turn control of the system over to whatever OS is on the first bootable device.The most common home use of the BIOS is to change the boot order (referenced above). If you want to run an OS installer from, for example, a flash drive or secondary hard drive, you will need to enter the BIOS and change the boot order.Instructions on accessing your system’s BIOS are flashed on the screen during POST, but this is often quick enough that you will need to search for the exact procedure (usually mashing a function key repeatedly as the system is booting).The BIOS is also used for overclocking and diagnosing system hardware problems.The phrase “to boot a computer” comes from the colloquialism of “to pull oneself up by one’s bootstraps”.6
Operating SystemsAn operating system (OS) is responsible for managing all of the hardware and software resources of a system to enable it to perform its tasks.

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Term
Spring
Professor
jeanette barott

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