A such as the CPU, hard drives or

A Kernel is the foundational
layer of an operating system (i.e. Windows/ iOS/ Linux).  It functions at a basic level, its roles
include communicating with hardware and managing resources, such as the CPU,
hard drives or RAM. Since the Kernel is responsible for many essential
processes, it is loaded at the beginning of the boot sequence, or when the
computer starts up. The Kernels first job is to perform a system check and
recognizes components within the computer, this includes the processor, the GPU
(Graphics Processing Unit) and the memory. Any of the computers peripherals, or
the I/O (input/output) devices, for example keyboard and mouse, monitors or
speakers are checked as well. After the operating system (OS) is fully loaded
and the graphical user interface (GUI) appears, for instance windows icon and buttons,
the Kernel is still busy and is hard at work in the background, managing
requests and resources, even after the OS has fully loaded.

There are currently numerous
different types of kernels that exist, although there are two more popular
kernels that include, the monolithic and microkernels. A monolithic kernel is a
single codebase, or block of source code, often referred simply as the “source”
of a program, that contains variable declarations, functions, loops,
instructions, and other statements that tell a program how to function, typically
made up of millions of lines of code. This provides all the necessary services
offered by the operating system. Monolithic kernels in a general summary is the
most simplistic design which creates a very efficient communication connection
between the software and hardware. Examples of operating systems that use a
monolithic kernel are: Linux, Microsoft Windows (95,98,ME) and OpenBSD, just to
name a few. As well as the monolithic kernels, the microkernels have the same
function, however they are designed to be as small as possible. Unlike managing
all the requests from a single large codebase, this type of kernel handles only
the most straightforward functions. It uses servers to achieve all the demands,
for instance, device drivers which include keyboards, printers, monitors and
more are all contained within the monolithic kernel, whereas in the microkernel
the requests are split into smaller more separate components. Having this
design makes it more complex, although this can provide a more efficient use of
system resources and helps protect against system crashes. Naming a few
operating systems that use the microkernel are: MacOS, Integrity and QNX.

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Unfortunately, because the
kernel is responsible for handling the most basic functions of a computer, if
the kernel happens to crash then the entire computer system can crash as well,
these are often caused by a communication issue by the hardware. On a windows
computer this can sometimes be similar to a “blue screen of death”, which is an
error message that is displayed by Windows when a non-recoverable error takes
place. On macOS and UNIX systems is it called a “kernel panic”, and the only
way to recover from this event is to restart your computer.

Computers aren’t the only
platform in which you can find kernels. With modern smartphones being closer to
handheld computers, enabling us to send/ receive emails, go on social media,
surfing the web and even playing games. Many mobile phones use operating
systems, this development brings advanced functions that were previously only
achievable through the use of computers. Developers also are able to create
applications or ‘apps’, these software programs are developed so that
smartphones can carry out specific functions.


Google currently own Android
OS which is powered by the Linux kernel, this can be found on a wide range of
devices and is presently the dominant smartphone platform due to its remarkable
traction with a wide spectrum of users. Android uses an open source operation system,
this allows developers to access unlocked hardware so they can develop new
programs as they like. Anyone who wants to develop apps for the phones market
place can do so, with unlimited access and very little restriction to its
licencing, this key feature is what benefits users to a ton of free content.  


File System

The File System term has to
some extent two different meanings, both of which are more commonly used. The
first meaning is that in the computer system, there is the directory tree, or
hierarchy of directories. The purpose of the directory tree is to organise
files in the computer system itself, these directories are what is called the
root directory, if you’re using Linux or UNIX. Each root directory contains a chain
of subdirectories, and each of those subdirectories, encloses furthermore
subdirectories. The
directory tree is located on a single part in the partition which then a
partition is a section of the hard disk, that contains a single type of file system

The second meaning is how the
data storage, for example: files, folders, etc can be organised on a computer’s
hard disk, floppy disk or CDROM, or on a partition on a hard disk, this is then
referred to as file system. 


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