Computer Science, University of Southern Maine

Meeting Times: 11:45am-1:00pm Monday and Wednesday Location: 209 Payson-Smith Hall
Instructor: Stephen Houser Phone: 780-4588
Office Hours: by appointment EMail: houser AT
Office: Luther Bonney 144 or perhaps Science 103 (CS Lab)


Operating System Concepts, with Java, 2007, Seventh Edition, Silberschatz, Galvin, and Gagne.

Course Objectives

From the USM Course Catalog: Bottom up construction of a layered operating system beginning with the hardware interface and ending with the user interface. Specific topics covered include concurrent processes, process management, I/O, virtual memory, file management, resource scheduling, and performance measurement. Students are assumed to be familiar with general machine architecture, functions of system software (compilers, loaders, editors, etc.), data structures, and to have some experience with UNIX or another multiprogramming operating system.

  • What is an operating system, what parts make it up, what does it do
  • Processes, multi-processing, tasking, what are processes, scheduling
  • Memory management, virtual memory, paging
  • File Systems and I/O Systems
  • How to write Operating System modules, code, extensions, etc.


The following is a preliminary schedule we will try to follow. The reading chapters are out of the textbook. They try to cover material we will be talking about in class. Plan to read the material before class, attend class, and then re-read after class to get the best comprehension.

Material Covered
Assignment Due

1 - 9/1 Introduction, Computer System Structures   Ch. 1
2 - 9/8 Operating System Structures   Ch. 2
3 - 9/15 Process Management/Processes   Ch. 3
4 - 9/22 Process Management/Threads Project #1 Ch. 4
5 - 9/29 Process Management/Scheduling   Ch. 5
6 - 10/6 Process Management/Synchronization Exam #1 Ch. 6
7 - 10/13 Process Management/Deadlocks, October Break Project #2 Ch. 7
8 - 10/20 Storage Management/Memory Management   Ch. 8
9 - 10/27 * Storage Management/Virtual Memory   Ch. 9
10 - 11/3 Storage Management/File-System Interface   Ch. 10
11 - 11/10 Storage Mangement/File-System Implementation Exam #2 Ch. 11
12 - 11/17 I/O Systems Project #3 Ch. 12
13 - 11/24 I/O Systems/Mass Storage Structures, Thanksgiving Break   Ch. 13
14 - 12/1    
15 - 12/8    
16 - 12/15 Final Exam Week Exam, Project #4  


It cannot be stressed enough that attendance is very important. Many topics will be covered in class that may not be covered in the book. You are responsible for acquiring material missed due to absence.

Exam make-ups should be scheduled well ahead of time. If that is not possible, you need to make arrangements to take the exam outside of regular class time. Do not assume you can make up a missed exam (University policy).

Grading Policy

Grades are based on a combination of homework, projects, the final exam, and class participation.

Exams 20% each (3 exams = 60%)

Projects 10% each (4 projects = 40%)

Other Information

Should you need services or accommodations due to a disability to fully participate in the class please speak with me or contact the Office of Academic Support for Students with Disabilities, Luther Bonney 242.

Class cancellations are posted on USM's web site and on the Storm line at 780-4800.