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Operating Systems: A Systematic View [Paperback]

William S. Davis
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Paperback CDN $181.83  
Paperback, May 1987 --  

Book Description

May 1987
This sixth edition provides students with an applied introduction to the principles of operating systems while guiding them through most operating systems used today. Aimed at students who are interested in using, rather than designing, computer operating systems and networks, the text is designed to show why operating systems are needed and what they do. This book takes students through the principles of OS and illustrates them with a wealth of examples.
--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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From the Back Cover

B> The fifth edition of Operating Systems: A Systematic View offers a practical and applied introduction to operating system concepts, aimed at people interested in using computers, operating systems, and networks. The authors take a "systematic view" of the subject, where they provide insight into what is going on beneath the surface instead of focusing so much on OS theory. The intent is to show why operating systems are needed and what, at a functional level, they do. The book features an engaging, reader-friendly presentation written at a pace and level appropriate for novices, and contains extensive illustrations to visually reinforce concepts. Readers are guided through some of today's most widely used operating systems, including Linux, UNIX, and Windows 2000. Also included is coverage of several modern topics and technologies, with chapters on the Windows interface, Intel Pentium architecture, and Windows internals, as well as a section on network operating systems with chapters on client/server networks, Windows 2000, Novell, and the Internet. This book is designed for people from non-technical fields and backgrounds who simply need to know how to interact with, rather than how to design, an operating system. It requires no background in programming and only a working knowledge of basic algebra. It will also be of interest to computer programmers, technical managers, and applied practitioners who want a practical and applied introduction to operating systems. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book! Dec 25 2003
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
This book gives excellent explanation of how an operating system works and will suit a new computer user or someone on a more advanced level. The only downfall of this book was its limited text on Linux. Otherwise its a great book and worth having!
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5.0 out of 5 stars It Is What It Is--& It's Good! Sept. 22 2003
By citizen
Format:Hardcover
While William S. Davis & T.M. Rajkumar aren't going to win a Pulitzer for literature, they should @ the least get a honourable mention for Operating Systems A Systematic View (OSASV). They've guided the book from its inception in 1977 up to this, the 5th ed., in 2001. However, as it's now 2003, using this as a textbook, the book is behind in a few areas of modest concern, but not to a detrimental degree as the base concepts are still germane; & will remain so until radical changes occur in hardware & software design. Despite some neglect on the part of the authors in regard to Open Source, I have no compunctions giving this text a full 5 stars, if anything based upon its merits as a really solid introductory text that's properly geared towards its audience.
Using clear, concise language that is appropriate for a mid-range level student--the jargon level isn't suitable for total newbies, but will likely alienate super-users--Davis & Rajkumar walk readers through the gorier details of Operating Systems (OS) & the hardware where these interfaces run. I say gorier as even savvy end-users may not appreciate the elegant, complicated dance between an OS & its machine.
As I'm very much a kinaesthetic learner, I find textbooks somewhat frustrating; especially poorly worded books are next to useless. However, I can find happy medium w/good illustrations supplementing my tactical inclinations. Of course, when dealing w/machine cycles, I'm not able to manually work a CPU, pick up & tinker w/memory as it holds a program, etc. Ergo, I found the illustrations in OSASV combined w/the language highly informative & descriptive; especially in Part One dealing w/how the hardware actually interprets commands from the OS & vice-versa.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Not a college-level text Nov. 24 2002
Format:Hardcover
This is not a college-level text. It includes shallow coverage of topics one would expect in an OS course, but not at a level appropriate of such a course, and then spends a tremendous amount of space on computer literacy issues, like how to use MS-DOS and Unix command lines, etc. I think the authors couldn't decide whether they wanted to write an OS text for non-majors, or a computer literacy text.
In their preface, the authors seem confused about the meanings of the words "applied" and "theoretical," saying this is an applied text, and suggesting that texts for actual OS courses are theoretical. While I will grant them that pretty much any other OS text out there has more theoretical content, this one also has less applicable content than most.
Had the cover and preface made it clear this text was predominantly a computer literacy text, I'd have had no problem with it, nor would it have made its way to my bookshelf. But the title, the text on the back cover, and the preface are all misleading.
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1.0 out of 5 stars A schizophrenic view of operating systems Aug. 18 2002
Format:Hardcover
Operating Systems a Systematic View is written in clear, easily understandable language and is copiously illustrated. Unfortunately it virtues end there. I used this book as the text in the "Introduction to Operating Systems" at University of Phoenix. Both the course and the text were wanting.
The text starts with a high level description of basic operating system functions that are common to all operating systems. This is the best section of the book. It benefits from the clear writing used throughout the book.Since it is a high level over view it is not hindered by its' superficiality, as the
rest of the book is.
The book then includes a description of UNIX, MVS, Windows 2000 and surprisingly, MS DOS. These are suitable to a very naive user who has never seen the operating system. They only provide a brief overview of each system. We are then treated to an extremely brief summary of each systems scripting or Job Control Language. If fact they are so brief as to be useless. These sections should have been left out.
The text then leaps into a detailed description of each systems virtual memory management system. These sections are too superficial to benefit anyone who will actually be attempting system programing. They are to detailed to be worth while to someone who will not be doing system programing.
The reader would have been better served by less introductory material on each OS, and by complete elimination of the discussion of virtual memory management. Instead that space should have been replaced by a more in depth study of the scripting and job control languages and by a look at performance tuning. The time spent of describing the data structures of the Windows virtual memory could better have been spent learning what parameters of the operating
system can be tuned, and how to measure them.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.2 out of 5 stars  13 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Only book to meet its audience's needs Feb. 2 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
While this text is getting old, it is still relevant. The concepts presented are still of primary concern. It nicely takes the student thru a simple OS and thru complex ones, e.g. UNIX and IBM's MVS, to introduce virtual memory, paging, scheduling, resource contention, and so forth. And, the student does not need 3 years of CS courses to get thru the book. For a 2 year course, or for those needing to know about Operating systems, but not the "gory" details of coding them, this is an excellent work.
I have been teaching with it since the second edition. It took a long time to find a book like this. The student workbook is an excellent addition as well.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best book off it's type. Aug. 3 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
If you are looking for a text that only covers Microsoft operating systems then this is not your book. BUT, if you want a book to teach the fundamentals of an operating system as a platform for today's bread and butter applications(AR, AP, BILLING, SA, INVENTORY, ETC) then this is super. The current world of new computer-ist they only know/learn the Microsoft systems. The bulk of processing done today is still in the backrooms with mainframe & midrange range systems using MVS, VM, VME, UNIX(and similars), and OS/400s, which Microsoft Win/95/98/NTs don't touch. This is for the student that must interface with the total computer industry not just word processing and INTERNET. It should be complimented with a good Win/98/NT bible type book.
I do wish it was updated a little.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Excellent breadth and clarity, organization and details wanting May 15 2006
By emag - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Unlike other OS books I've seen, A Systematic View is a clearly written, concise introduction to the foundations of operating systems -- or at least the first few chapters are. As noted by other reviewers, the book doesn't know where to go after the first section -- it meanders into too-brief-to-be-useful hands-on tutorial sections for the middle portion, then moves on to touch open a few particulars with a few popular systems in a way remniscent of excerpts from a heavier text before concluding with a section on distributed computing (the bulk of which concerns remote file access via CIFS/SMB). Scattered amongst the latter half of the book are some decent portions on virtual memory and x86 architectural features.

The book would benefit greatly from having the tutorials moved to online appendices, the OS-specific analysis moved to standard appendices, and the core principles delved into more deeply. Davis and Rajkumar could also do with a few more technical proofreaders; while grammatical, spelling, and typographical errors are kept to a minimum, terminology is used oddly at best throughout the work with many of the "real-world" examples being flat-out wrong.

Reservations aside, I have not found a more approachable introductory/survey text. It's just a pity that there are so many problems with it even in the 6th edition. With a bit of work this could be a respectable upper-division text, but at the moment I can only recommend it for two-year technical/community colleges.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book! Dec 25 2003
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book gives excellent explanation of how an operating system works and will suit a new computer user or someone on a more advanced level. The only downfall of this book was its limited text on Linux. Otherwise its a great book and worth having!
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not a college-level text Nov. 24 2002
By Jeff Martens - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This is not a college-level text. It includes shallow coverage of topics one would expect in an OS course, but not at a level appropriate of such a course, and then spends a tremendous amount of space on computer literacy issues, like how to use MS-DOS and Unix command lines, etc. I think the authors couldn't decide whether they wanted to write an OS text for non-majors, or a computer literacy text.
In their preface, the authors seem confused about the meanings of the words "applied" and "theoretical," saying this is an applied text, and suggesting that texts for actual OS courses are theoretical. While I will grant them that pretty much any other OS text out there has more theoretical content, this one also has less applicable content than most.
Had the cover and preface made it clear this text was predominantly a computer literacy text, I'd have had no problem with it, nor would it have made its way to my bookshelf. But the title, the text on the back cover, and the preface are all misleading.
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