Disk Operating System


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disk operating system

[¦disk ¦äp·ə‚rād·iŋ ‚sis·təm]
(computer science)
An operating system which uses magnetic disks as its primary on-line storage. Abbreviated DOS.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

Disk Operating System

(operating system)
(DOS) The original disk operating system from IBM.

DOS was the low-end OS of choice on the IBM 360, the high-end system was called just "OS". DOS had a smaller kernel and less functionality than OS and could run on the typical 32K 360/30 and 64K 360/40 class machines.

DOS was a successor to TOS.

disk operating system

(operating system)
(DOS) The name of a number of operating systems which include facilities for storing files on disk, often used to refer to Microsoft DOS. Such a system must handle physical disk I/O, the mapping of file names to disk addresses and protection of files from unauthorised access (in a multi-user system).

A DOS should present a uniform interface to different storage device such as floppy disks, hard disks and magnetic tape drives. It may also provide some kind of locking to prevent unintentional simultaneous access by two processes to the same file (or record).
This article is provided by FOLDOC - Free Online Dictionary of Computing (foldoc.org)

DOS

(1) See denial of service.

(2) (Disk Operating System) Any operating system that supports hard drives. See operating system.

(3) (Disk Operating System) A family of IBM mainframe operating systems (DOS, DOS/370, DOS/VS, DOS/VSE). As disk storage became accepted in the late 1960s, DOS started out as a variant of IBM's Tape Operating System (TOS); however, it was always the "junior partner" to OS/360 and its progeny. See DOS/VSE.

(4) (Disk Operating System)Pronounced "dahss." A single-user operating system from Microsoft for Intel x86 personal computers. It was the first operating system for IBM PCs and IBM-compatible PCs, and it remained the underlying control program for Windows 3.1, 95, 98 and ME. Subsequent versions of Windows incorporated all DOS functionality, and most DOS commands work the same in Windows. See cmd abc's.

PC-DOS and MS-DOS
The OS in the IBM PC was PC-DOS, and the OS used by all other PC makers was MS-DOS. Except for DOS 6, which contained different utilities, PC-DOS and MS-DOS commands and system functions were the same, and all PC-DOS and MS-DOS versions were commonly called "DOS." See DOS 6.

DOS Lives On
In various incarnations, DOS is still used in embedded systems, where a small OS footprint is required. Examples are Digital Research's DR-DOS, ROM-DOS from DataLight (www.datalight.com) and the open source FreeDOS. See embedded system.
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References in periodicals archive ?
The program requires an IBM personal computer with 128K of main storage, two double-sided disk drives, an 80-character display, and an IBM Personal Computer Disk Operating System.
Most personal computers (PCs) run on the traditional disk operating system (MS-DOS), a decades-old program designed to handle only one computer and one application at a time.
A related decision is the computer's disk operating system (DOS)--the software through which applications programs run.