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real-time operating system



abrieviation for a program with a specific purpose that must guarentee certain response times for particular computing tasks, or else the machine's application is useless; found in many types of robotic equipment

Recycle Bin

a folder on a Windows desktop in which deleted files from the hard drive are held until permanently perged from the system


a portion of the hard drive containing all the different configurations (settings) used by the Windows operating system as well as by other applications


a group of icons collected for easy access

root directory

the top level of the filing structure in a computer system, in Windows computers it is represented as C: + a backward /

Safe mode

a special diagnostic mode designed for troubleshooting errors that occur during the boot process


on the desktop, the bar that appears at the side or bottom of the window and controls which part of the information is displayed on the screen


a section of a hard drive platter, wedge-shaped from the center of the platter to the edge


a computer that provides resources to other computers on a nerwork


a device that is used to access the Interent and that combines the functionality of a cell phone, PMP, and a PDA into one unit

source code

the actual lines of instructional code that make the program work, not accessible to the general public


a program that helps coordinate all print jobs being sent to the printer at the same time

swap file

data put here when more RAM space is needed

page file

another name for for a temporary storage area on the hard drive where the OS "swaps out" or moves the data or instructions from RAM that have not been recently used

system files

any of the main files of an operating system (OS)

System Restore

a utility in Windows that restores system settings to a specific previous date when everything was working properly

system restore point

in Windows, a snapshot of your entire system's settings used for restoring your system to a prior point in time, made every week

system software

the set of programs that enables a computer's hardware devices and application software to work together; it includes the OS and utility programs

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