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Linux and Unix Books page7

     

  1. System Maintenance and Upgrades
    As computers become more ubiquitous in large corporate, government, and academic organizations, the total cost of owning and maintaining them is becoming unmanageable. Computers are increasingly networked, which only complicates the management problem, given the myriad of viruses and other attacks commonplace in today's networks. Security problems can wreak havoc on an organization's computing infrastructure. To prevent this, software vendors frequently release patches that can be applied to address security and maintenance issues that have been discovered. This creates a management nightmare for administrators who take care of large sets of machines. 
     
  2. The PCs with Portable SoulPads
    Today?s laptop computers give users two highly desirable features. One is the ability to suspend a computing session (e.g., running applications, open windows) and resume it later, perhaps at a different location. The other is access to their personal and familiar software environment  wherever they are. In spite of this convenience, a major drawback of this model is that the user has to carry a fairly bulky device. In addition, though docking stations allow the user to use a larger display and attach some peripherals, the user is limited to the capabilities of the hardware integrated in the portable computer, such as the processor and memory. Before the advent of portable computers, there were two main approaches to suspending a session in one location and resuming it at another. One method was based on process migration between the machines at the two locations [3, 17].
     
  3. The recovering device drivers
    Improving reliability is one of the greatest challenges for commodity operating systems. System failures are commonplace and costly across all domains: in the home, in the server room, and in embedded systems, where the existence of the OS itself is invisible. At the low end, failures lead to user frustration and lost sales. At the high end, an hour of downtime from a system failure can result in losses in the millions [16]. Most of these system failures are caused by the operating system's device drivers. Failed drivers cause 85% of Windows XP crashes [30], while Linux drivers have seven times the bug rate of other kernel code [14]. A failed driver typically causes the application, the OS kernel, or both to crash or stop functioning as expected. Hence, preventing driver-induced failures improves overall system reliability.


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Posted on: April 18, 2011

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