Skip to main content


CSC2025 : Operating Systems (Inactive)

  • Inactive for Year: 2020/21
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Nick Cook
  • Owning School: Computing
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


To provide an introduction to Operating Systems: concepts, structure and mechanisms.

The module will provide an overview of operating systems and systems programming with a focus on: the process model, scheduling, memory management and inter-process communication.

Outline Of Syllabus

Operating Systems – overview of operating systems
• Role and purpose of the operating system
• Functionality of a typical operating system
Operating Systems – systems programming
• Introduction to C and the C type system
• Memory model, allocation and access
• The POSIX system API
Operating Systems – Processes
• The process model, lifecycle and states
• Process management and implementation
Operating Systems – scheduling
• Pre-emptive and nonpre-emptive scheduling
• Scheduling algorithms
• Scheduling implementation
Operating Systems – memory management
• The address space abstraction
• Allocation and swapping
• Virtual memory, paging and page replacement
Operating Systems – concurrency and interprocess communication
• Concurrent execution
• The “mutual exclusion” problem and some solutions
• Deadlock: causes, conditions, prevention
• Concurrency mechanisms

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion440:3022:00Revision for end of semester exams
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion441:0044:00Lecture follow-up
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture441:0044:00Lectures
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical221:0022:00Practicals
Guided Independent StudyProject work221:0022:00Coursework
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study232:0046:00Background reading
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Techniques and theory are presented in lectures and cover core concepts. Additional reading material on an operating system implementation is provided as part of coursework that involves the practice of systems programming and operating system development.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
PC Examination901A80Blackboard Exam
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Prob solv exercises1M10Systems programming exercises
Practical/lab report1M10Operating system modification exercise
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The written examination will test the students' depth of knowledge of the structure of common operating systems. The coursework will assess their systems programming ability, and their understanding of and ability to modify an operating system implementation.

Study abroad students considering this module should contact the School to discuss its availability and assessment.

N.B. This module has both “Exam Assessment” and “Other Assessment” (e.g. coursework). If the total mark for either assessment falls below 35%, the maximum mark returned for the module will normally be 35%.

Reading Lists