Operating Systems: Glossary

Definition of terms used in this chapter:


Application A computer program that helps you perform a task for a specific purpose
Backstage View A centralized space for file management tasks such as opening, saving, printing, or sharing a file
Booting Booting is the process of turning on the computer and powering up the system
Cloud-based Subscription service that receives continuous updates
Cloud Computing Applications and services that are accessed over the internet
Cloud Storage Online storage of data including files and folders that allow access from different places and devices
Cortana Microsoft’s “personal assistant” in Windows 10
Data The documents, worksheets, pictures, songs, and so on that you create and store during the day-to-day use of your computer
Data Management The management of files and folders for organization
Data Security The OS is in charge of keeping data safe inside your computer and computer programs. It sets up security features that keep unwanted cyber attackers at bay.
Desktop Simulation of a real desk that represents your work area
Desktop Apps A computer program that is installed on your PC and requires a computer operating system such as Microsoft Windows to run
Desktop Mode A Windows 10 view where app icons appear in an alphabetical list on the left side of the screen; they can be made to appear on the right side as tiles
Device Controlling Your OS will allow you to open or block access to devices like removable devices, CDs/DVDs, data transfer devices, printers, USBs, and others
Disk Management This manages all the drives installed in a computer like hard drives, optical disk drives, and flash drives. Disk management can be used to divide disks, format drives, and more
File Information, such as a document, stored on a computer under a single name
File Name The name of the file. It is good practice to use an underscore “_” rather than other special characters when naming a file
Folder A spot to store and organize files on a computer
GUI An acronym that stands for Graphical User Interface: Graphics such as an image of a file or folder that you click to perform an action
Icons Small images that represent commands, files, applications, or other windows
Insertion Point Blinking vertical line that indicates where text will be inserted when you type or where an action will take place
Loading and Execution Your OS will load, or start up, a program and then execute the program so that it opens and runs
Location Any disk, drive, folder, or another place on your computer in which you can store files and create folders
Memory Management This is the process of controlling and coordinating the computer applications and allocating space for programs
Microsoft 365 A version of Microsoft Office that includes Word, Excel, Access, and PowerPoint to which you subscribe for an annual fee. Microsoft 365 may be free to you as a student.
Microsoft Account A user account with which you can sign into any Windows 10 computer on which you have, or create, an account
OneDrive Microsoft’s free cloud storage for anyone with a Microsoft account
Operating System A computer program that manages the other programs and devices on a computer
Pen A pen-shaped stylus that you can use on touchscreen computers
Pointer Any symbol that displays on your screen in response to moving your mouse and with which you can select objects and commands
Pointing Device A mouse or touchpad that is used to control the pointer
Process Management Your OS has to allocate resources to different processes on the machine, enable the processes to share information, protect them, and synchronize them
Program A set of instructions that a computer uses to complete a task
Printing Controlling Simply put, your OS takes control of the printers that are connected to the computer and the materials that need to be printed
Resources The physical components of your computer such as the CPU, memory, and other attached devices like a USB or printer
Start Menu A menu in Windows 10 that displays as a result of clicking the Start or the Windows icon and displays installed programs and tiles
Synchronization Also called syncing, this is the process of updating computer files that are in two or more locations according to specific rules.
Touchscreen Interfaces Often used on mobile devices, tablets, and some laptops, a display device that allows the user to interact with a computer by touching areas on the screen
USB Flash Drive Also called a removable storage device, used to save and transfer information from one computer to another
User Account A single user on a computer
User Interface A user interface or UI refers to the part of the OS that allows a user to enter and receive information. This can be done with typed commands, code, and so forth
Windows 10 An operating system developed by Microsoft Corporation that works with mobile computing devices and also with traditional desktop and laptop PCs
Windows 10 Display The configurable pages in Windows 10


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