Dr. Mark Humphrys

School of Computing. Dublin City University.

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My big idea: Ancient Brain


CA216      CA249      CA318

CA400      CA651      CA668

CA651 - Introduction to Networks and Operating Systems

Quickest way to find this web page:
Google ca651 dcu
Think about it: All other ways (starting at the CA site, Googling my name, etc.) will take much longer to get here.
Just Google module code and DCU and it is the first hit.


Repeat lab 2017

Repeat lab: Fri 4 Aug 2017. 2 pm. L125.
Lab will be revealed on the day.

  1. Get stock prices


How to contact me

See How to contact me.

About the notes

Some figures from Tanenbaum.

My notes contain many hyperlinks to background material. Some students get confused about what is the core course. The core course is anything that is linked to directly on this front page. All other links are just background material.




Week 1

Operating Systems
  1. What is an Operating System?

  2. PC operating systems
  3. Server operating systems
  4. Mobile operating systems

Week 2

  1. How to login to Linux at DCU

  2. How to find your Linux/Unix version

  3. Introduction to UNIX

  1. Lab - Intro to UNIX / Linux

Week 3

  1. Introduction to UNIX (More)

Linux Reference

  1. UNIX / Linux tutorials [REFERENCE]
  2. UNIX / Linux reference [REFERENCE]

  1. Linux Quiz 1

Week 4

  1. More UNIX

  1. Linux Quiz 2

Week 5

  1. UNIX file protections
  2. UNIX directory protections

Shell scripting

  1. Introduction to Shell

  1. Linux Quiz 3

Week 6

  1. Sample Shell programs

  1. Lab - Shell

  2. Get sample scripts working.

  3. How to debug a program

Week 7

  1. More on Shell

  2. Shell utilities

  1. How to set up an active desktop in 6 lines of Shell

ASSESSMENT - 10 percent of module
- write in lab, marked in lab

  1. Lab - cweb

Week 8

  1. How to write a search engine in 9 lines of Shell

Operating Systems

  1. OS and hardware

ASSESSMENT - 10 percent of module
- write in lab, marked in lab
  1. active desktop

Week 9

  1. History of Operating Systems

  2. Microsoft dominance

ASSESSMENT - 10 percent of module
- write in lab, marked in lab
  1. xprog

Week 10

  1. Other dominant companies

  2. Future of Operating Systems
ASSESSMENT - 20 percent of module
- write in lab, marked in lab
  1. Search engine

Week 11


  1. Introduction to Networks
  2. History of the Internet
  3. Discussion of Internet addressing

Week 12


File systems

  1. Using files


Extra notes - Not on course this year

Operating Systems
  1. Linux/Unix configuration files


  1. Introduction to Networks (more)
  2. Network Topology


Operating Systems


Library categories

Operating Systems



Sometimes I link to Wikipedia. I need to write something in defence of this.

On the one hand, Wikipedia is deeply flawed, so you should use all links to Wikipedia with extreme caution. Many people refuse to link to it.

On the other hand, it is often clearly the best thing to link to on a topic. I say: Link to it, but use with caution and scepticism.

Mark calculator

Exam (50): Practical (50):

Total mark:      

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On the Internet since 1987.