4. Hardware Management
A computer is a mix of hardware and software. Software has to interact with the hardware in order to receive data from input devices and to send its result to output devices.
Another important function of the operating system is to manage the way this happens.
Every piece of hardware comes with software called a 'device driver', for example, the printer will have a print driver, a mouse will have its own mouse driver. A device driver acts as the go-between for other software to 'talk' to the hardware.
For instance a word-processor will send text and images to a printer by sending instructions and data through the printer's device driver. A music player will send music to the sound card by means of the sound card's device driver and so on.
Most device drivers are loaded into memory by the operating system during booting. But some are loaded by the operating system when a piece of hardware is connected to the computer. For instance inserting a memory stick will cause the operating system to load the right USB driver and a message appears telling you that the device is ready to use.
Challenge see if you can find out one extra fact on this topic that we haven't already told you
Click on this link: Device Drivers