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Os Function

Os Function

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Published by: kalpana_mandhane on Jul 09, 2011
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Multiprocessing is the coordinated processing of programs by more than one computer processor.

Multiprocessing is a general term that can mean the dynamic assignment of a program to one of two or more computers working in tandem or can involve multiple computers working on the same program at the same time (in parallel). With the advent of parallel processing, multiprocessing is divided into symmetric multiprocessing (SMP) and massively parallel processing (MPP). In symmetric (or "tightly coupled") Learn More
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multiprocessing, the processors share memory and the I/O bus or data path. A single copy of the operating system is in charge of all the processors. SMP, also known as a "shared everything" system, does not usually exceed 16 processors. In massively parallel (or "loosely coupled") processing, up to 200 or more processors can work on the same application. Each processor has its own operating system and memory, but an "interconnect" arrangement of data paths allows messages to be sent between processors. Typically, the setup for MPP is more complicated, requiring thought about how to partition a common database among processors and how to assign work among the processors. An MPP system is also known as a "shared nothing" system. Multiprocessing should not be confused with multiprogramming, or the interleaved execution of two or more programs by a processor. Today, the term is rarely used since all but the most specialized computer operating systems support multiprogramming. Multiprocessing can also be confused with multitasking, the management of programs and the system services they request as tasks that can be interleaved, and with multithreading, the management of multiple execution paths through the computer or of multiple users sharing the same copy of a program.

Multiprogramming is a rudimentary form of parallel processing in which several programs are run at the same time on a uniprocessor. Since there is only one processor , there can be no true simultaneous execution of different programs. Instead, the operating system executes part of one program, then part of another, and so on. To the user it appears that all programs are executing at the same time. If the machine has the capability of causing an interrupt after a specified time interval, then the operating system will execute each program for a given length of time, regain control, and then execute another program for a given length of time, and so on. In the absence of this mechanism, the operating system has no choice but to begin to execute a

program with the expectation, but not the certainty, that the program will eventually return control to the operating system. If the machine has the capability of protecting memory , then a bug in one program is less likely to interfere with the execution of other programs. In a system without memory protection, one program can change the contents of storage assigned to other programs or even the storage assigned to the operating system. The resulting system crashes are not only disruptive, they may be very difficult to debug since it may not be obvious which of several programs is at fault.

It is easy to confuse multithreading with multitasking or multiprogramming , which are somewhat different ideas. Multithreading is the ability of a program or an operating system process to manage its use by more than one user at a time and to even manage multiple requests by the same user without having to have multiple copies of the programming running in the computer. Each user request for a program or system service (and here a user can also be another program) is kept track of as a thread with a separate identity. As programs work on behalf of the initial request for that thread and are interrupted by other requests, the status of work on behalf of that thread is kept track of until the work is completed.

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