Webopedia on Google+Webopedia on TwitterWebopedia on FacebookTech Bytes Blog
Main » TERM » K »

kernel

The kernel is the central module of an operating system (OS). It is the part of the operating system that loads first, and it remains in main memory. Because it stays in memory, it is important for the kernel to be as small as possible while still providing all the essential services required by other parts of the operating system and applications. The the kernel code is usually loaded into a protected area of memory to prevent it from being overwritten by programs or other parts of the operating system.

Typically, the kernel is responsible for memory management, process and task management, and disk management. The kernel connects the system hardware to the application software. Every operating system has a kernel. For example the Linux kernel is used numerous operating systems including Linux, FreeBSD, Android and others.







TECH RESOURCES FROM OUR PARTNERS
DID YOU KNOW?
5 Best Valentines Day Ideas for Open Source Romantics

Because nothing says "I Love You" Like an open source app. Read More »

Guarding your Data against Cyber Attacks

In this new era of heightened stakes comes an increased need for a comprehensive security strategy. Let's take a look at how cyber-threats have... Read More »

The Great Data Storage Debate: Is Tape Dead?

Tape clearly is on the decline. But remember, legacy systems can hang for a shockingly long time. Read More »

QUICK REFERENCE
Network Fundamentals Study Guide

A network is a group of two or more computer systems or devices, linked together to share resources, exchange files and electronic communications.... Read More »

Computer Architecture Study Guide

This Webopedia  study guide describes the different parts of a computer system and their relations. Read More »

Webopedia Polls

The trend for the past two years has been for shoppers to spend more online during the holiday season. How do you typically shop for holiday... Read More »