Software, Programs and Support Modules

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Software, Programs andSupport Modules

Software
comprises of computer programs , supportmodules, and data modules that worktogether in order to provide a computerwith the instructions and data necessaryfor carrying out aspecific type of task.

Program
* a set of instructions that tells a computerhow to solve a problem or carry out a task

Support Module
* provides an auxiliary set of instructionsthat can be used in conjunction with themain software program * not designed to be run by the computeruser

Why does a software requires so many files?
* Most software packages include at least oneexecutable program file, several supportmodules, and one or more data modules. * It is for the programmers’ great deal offlexibility and efficiency. * Most of the support modules contain “generic”program instructions that can be used to workwith various programs. These techniques affect the process ofinstalling and uninstalling software.

How does a high-level language relate to themicroprocessor’s instruction set? * Machine language is the only language that canbe understood by a computer’smicroprocessor. * Instructions written in a high level languagemust be translated into machine languagebefore a computer can use them. * Special type of programs called translators,convert instructions from a high-level languageinto machine language.

How Software Works
* Assuming that a VideoFactory, a video editing program, was installed on your computer, which is running Windows. * You click the Start button, then select VideoFactory from the Programs menu. * The instructions for Vidfact.exe are loaded into RAM and then sent to the microprocessor. * The VideoFactory window opens and the graphical controls for video editing tasks appear. The programs wait for you to select a control by clicking it with the mouse. * The program follows its instructions and performs a pre-specified action. * The program continues to respond to the controls that you select until you click the Close button, which halts execution of the program instructions and closes the program window.

Software
Software: can be divided into:
systems software or system programs
applications software or application programs

Types of Computer Software

Operating Systems
collection of system programs and routinesthat reside in the computer’s memory functions:
• Schedule input and output operations
• Schedule work of jobs according topriority
• Communicate with the human operator
• Handle interruptions and monitorsystem status
• Log the jobs that are finished andcurrently being executed • Control system access and datasecurity functions
• Facilitate in locating and debuggingerrors
• Handle multiprogramming, so thatseveral programs can run at the sametime

Operating Systems

* stored in a secondary storage device knownas a system residence device * in the early days when magnetic tapedrives are still used as storage devices,operatingsystems that are stored inmagnetic tapes are called Tape OperatingSystems * if the operating system is stored in amagnetic disk it is called a Disk Operating System

Structure of anOperating System

Programs that Make Upan Operating System
Control Programs - manage the overallsystem operations and perform tasks suchas scheduling, input/output handling,monitoring of system status andcommunication with the programmer • Supervisor Program

• Input/Output Control System
Service Programs - are subprograms orroutines that are frequently used by theprogrammer • Language Translator Programs
• Librarian Programs
• Utility Programs
• Diagnostic Programs

What does an operating system do?
A computer’s software acts similarly with thechain of command in an army. Using application software, you issue acommand.
Application software tells the operatingsystem what to do. The operating system instructs the devicedrivers, device drivers...