Hardware - Chap 2

administrator account

account that grants to the administrator(s) rights and permissions to all hardware and software resources

Aero user interface

Vista 3D user interface


technology, software, or device that works with older legacy technologies, software, or devices


System folder in Windows 9x/Me that is used to synchronize files between two computers

child directory / folder

Other terms for subdirectory

command prompt window

Windows utility that is used to enter multiple commands to perform a variety of tasks

Compressed (zipped) Folder

folder with a .zip extension that contains compressed files


Initial screen that is displayed when an OS has a GUI interface loaded

device driver

- Small program stored on the hard drive- Allow kernel to communicate with hardware provided by OS or vendors


Any version of Linux

dual boot

The ability to boot using either of two OSs, such as Windows XP and Windows Vista

elevated command prompt window

A Vista command prompt window that allows commands that require administrative privileges

executive services

In Windows 2000/XP/Vista, a group of components running in kernel mode that interfaces between the subsystems in user mode and the HAL

file attribute

Properties assigned to a filei.e. read-only and hidden

file extension

Portion of the name of a file that is used to identify the file typeex: .exe .doc .xls

Aero glass

Another term for Aero user interface


The first part of the name assigned to the file8 char in DOS / 255 char in Windows

graphical user interface (GUI)

Interface that uses graphics as compared to a command-driven interface

HAL (hardware abstraction layer)

Low-level part of Windows 2000/XP/Vista, written specifically for each CPU technology, so that only the HAL must change when platform components change

initialization files

Configuration information files for Windows. System.ini is one of the most important Windows 9x/Me initialization files.


Portion of the OS that is responsible for interacting with the hardware

kernel mode

Windows 2000/XP/Vista "privileged" processing mode that has access to hardware components


Low end, inexpensive laptop with a 9 or 10" screen and no optical drive. Used for web browsing, email, and word processing

notification area

Area to the right of the taskbar that holds the icons for running services. Includes the volume control and network connectivity

operating system (OS)

Software that controls a computer

original equipment manufacturer (OEM) license

Software license that only manufacturers or builders of personal computers can purchase to be installed only on computers intended for sale


Minor fix/update to software


Location of a file referenced by a drive and directories


database that Windows uses to store hardware and software configuration information, user preferences, and setup information

root directory

Main directory created when a hard drive or disk is first formatted

system tray / systray

Other terms for notification tray


Other terms for patch

Linux root directory

indicated by a forward slash

Windows/DOS root directory

indicated by a backward slash


Program that runs in the background to support or serve Windows or an application


Portion of an OS that relates to the user and to applications (Software)

standard account

Vista user account type that can use software and hardware and make some system changes, but cannot make changes that affects the security of the system or other users


directory or folder contained in another directory or folder


bar normally located at the bottom of the Windows desktop, displaying information about open programs and providing quick access to others


Each process that the CPU is aware of; a single task that is part of a longer task or program

User Account Control (UAC) dialog box

- Appears when account requires administrative action- Administrator and standard accounts- Allow administrator to use less powerful account- Prevents malicious background tasks from doing harm- Can be disabled- Uses color codes (Red, Yellow, Green, Gray)

user mode

In Windows 2000/XP/Vista, a mode that provides an interface between an application and the OS, and only has access to hardware resources through the code running in kernel mode

virtual machine

One or more logical machines created within one physical machine


primary partition that has been assigned a drive letter and can be formatted with a file system

Four functions common to all operating systems

Providing a user interfaceManaging filesManaging applicationsManaging hardware


First OS used by IBM computers/compatiblesCommand line driven set of instructionsOutdated as desktop computer OS

Windows 2000

Provided stable environmentPlug & Play SupportDevice ManagerRecovery ConsoleActive Directory

Service pack

Major update or fix to an OS

Windows manages application

Launch - from hard drive into memoryProcess - program runs with resources assigned to it - request through Win32 subsystemThread - single taskMultitasking

Types of software

Operating systemApplicationsDevice driversBIOS

Bits in Windows 2000 OS

32 bits

Bits in Windows XP OS

32 bits except:x64 edition which had 64 bits

Bits in Vista

32 bits or 64 bits

Bits in Windows 7

32 bits or 64 bits

Maximum amount of GB in a 32 bit OS

4 GB

OS services

Manage hardwareManage applicationsManage filesProvides user interface

Process Application

Program runs with the assigned system resourceRequest resources through Win32 subsystem