operating system

Topics: File system / Pages: 3 (654 words) / Published: Oct 4th, 2013
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A file is a named collection of related information that is recorded on secondary storage such as magnetic disks, magnetic tapes and optical disks.In general, a file is a sequence of bits, bytes, lines or records whose meaning is defined by the files creator and user.

File Structure
File structure is a structure, which is according to a required format that operating system can understand.
A file has a certain defined structure according to its type.
A text file is a sequence of characters organized into lines.
A source file is a sequence of procedures and functions.
An object file is a sequence of bytes organized into blocks that are understandable by the machine.
When operating system defines different file structures, it also contains the code to support these file structure.
Unix, MS-DOS support minimum number of file structure.

File Type
File type refers to the ability of the operating system to distinguish different types of file such as text files source files and binary files etc. Many operating systems support many types of files. Operating system like MS-DOS and UNIX have the following types of files:

Ordinary files
These are the files that contain user information.
These may have text, databases or executable program.
The user can apply various operations on such files like add, modify, delete or even remove the entire file.

Directory files
These files contain list of file names and other information related to these files.

Special files:
These files are also known as device files.
These files represent physical device like disks, terminals, printers, networks, tape drive etc.
These files are of two types
Character special files - data is handled character by character as in case of terminals or printers.
Block special files - data is handled in blocks as in the case of disks and

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