Advantages of Using Linux Operating System for Your Application Server

The application developers have always faced a dilemma while choosing the operating system for their application server. There are several server operating systems available in the market, each of which has its own advantages and disadvantages. It is extremely important to know the pros and cons of each server operating system so that the server administrators can choose the best one according to the requirements. However, according to the market trends, the most popular server operating system in use today is the Linux server.

The basic advantage is the cost of maintaining a Linux server is relatively low. It has been observed that the complete process of installing, maintaining and supporting a server running on Linux operating system is extremely cost-effective, which is most desirable in small-scale applications.

Most of the proprietary server operating systems are single user software, where the OS can be installed for a single user on a single machine. On the other hand Linux can be installed on any number of computers. Moreover, Linux is considered to be extremely advanced as far as security is concerned. Therefore installing a Linux OS for your server has as an added advantage that you do not need to invest separately on protecting the server from viruses and other malicious attacks. There are very few viruses written for the Linux operating system, and more importantly, most of them are filtered out by the security features of Linux.

The other most important advantage of using Linux is the freedom of choices that it provides. It gives a lot of choices to the users in terms of tools and applications as it is an open source product where developers from all over the world contribute on a daily basis. As a result, there are a lot of software applications and tools which can be used for server administration and other activities. As an instance, in case of the text editors, Linux has five popular text editors to choose from.

The hardware dependency on Linux is relatively lower than other operating systems as it can optimize performance on systems with low specifications. In fact there are certain infrastructures based on Linux, where a lot of thin clients can be run together as a distributed server.

The final decision to choose the server for the application depends on the requirements and other factors like development tools which are to be used. However, it is a better decision to go for a Linux-based server due to its enhanced security features and freedom in server administration duties.

All About Operating Systems, Their Uses and Importance

An operating system can be considered as the base of any device that you can interact with. It may be your laptop/personal computer on which you are reading this or may be your personal phone, iPhone or any personal, commercial or home based device that you have and use it in your daily life. Now, let us know more about what it is and how it works.

It is basically a software component, which acts as an interface between the hardware device like the computer/laptop and you. The operating systems can be broadly classified into four types depending on the applications supported by them and the type of computer systems they control. They are: Real Time OS, Single User-Multi-tasking, Single-user-single task, and Multi-user.

This operating system component of your computer enables you to have a quick and easy interaction with the hardware. Since, the hardware cannot understand the English language there must be something to make it interactive and this is exactly what an OS does and that too very efficiently. It only understands the binary language, but at a faster rate. You will be able to do your entire personal or impersonal tasks with the help of the operating system. It is usually different for different types of hardware and they are as mentioned below:

Operating systems for mobile / handheld devices

As you know, an operating system is necessary for any device to run and the functionality of them depends upon the device for which they are developed by the group of developers. A mobile that works for all the mobile devices is called mobile OS (operating system). Various mobile hardware manufacturers have developed their own OS for their mobile phones.

Various corporations present a number of handheld devices for the users. All of them have their OS developed by themselves. Similarly, all other companies that offering their own handheld devices or mobile phones configure their devices in such a way that no other company’s OS could work with them. Today, the mobile OS have become capable of computation equal to the personal computers.

Operating system for computers / laptops

Operating system is also developed and used differently with all types of the non-moving computing devices. They are developed basically in following the base platforms or in simple language can be understood as the categories. First one is under Linux platform and the second is UNIX and the third one is windows environment or windows platform. Linux has been developed by various freelancers and hence, it comes under open source and free software development and distribution scheme.

Windows OS is new and the first OS to support graphical user interface. It was initially launched in DOS (disk OS ) environment to work with commands only. It has also some versions to act as server called windows server. Nowadays, most of the things are on mobile environment that is why, the new windows operating system is developed to be compatible with both mobile as well as personal handheld devices.

A Single-User Operating System And A Multi-User Operating System

A single-user operating system

We are all familiar with the concept of sitting down at a computer system and writing documents or performing some task such as writing a letter. In this instance there is one keyboard and one monitor that you interact with.

Operating systems such as Windows 95, Windows NT Workstation and Windows 2000 professional are essentially single user operating systems. They provide you the capability to perform tasks on the computer system such as writing programs and documents, printing and accessing files.

Consider a typical home computer. There is a single keyboard and mouse that accept input commands, and a single monitor to display information output. There may also be a printer for the printing of documents and images.

In essence, a single-user operating system provides access to the computer system by a single user at a time. If another user needs access to the computer system, they must wait till the current user finishes what they are doing and leaves.

Students in computer labs at colleges or University often experience this. You might also have experienced this at home, where you want to use the computer but someone else is currently using it. You have to wait for them to finish before you can use the computer system.

A multi-user operating system

A multi-user operating system lets more than one user access the computer system at one time. Access to the computer system is normally provided via a network, so that users access the computer remotely using a terminal or other computer.

In the early days of large multi-user computers, multiple terminals (keyboards and associated monitors) were provided. These terminals sent their commands to the main multi-user computer for processing, and the results were then displayed on the associated terminal monitor screen. Terminals were hard-wired directly to the multi-user computer system.

Today, these terminals are generally personal computers and use a network to send and receive information to the multi-user computer system. Examples of multi-user operating systems are UNIX, Linux (a UNIX clone) and mainframes such as the IBM AS400.

The operating system for a large multi-user computer system with many terminals is much more complex than a single-user operating system. It must manage and run all user requests, ensuring they do not interfere with each other. Devices that are serial in nature (devices which can only be used by one user at a time, like printers and disks) must be shared amongst all those requesting them (so that all the output documents are not jumbled up). If each user tried to send their document to the printer at the same time, the end result would be garbage. Instead, documents are sent to a queue, and each document is printed in its entirety before the next document to be printed is retrieved from the queue. When you wait inline at the cafeteria to be served you are in a queue. Imagine that all the people in the queue are documents waiting to be printed and the cashier at the end of the queue is the printer.