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Table of contents
1.
Introduction
2.
What is Firmware?
2.1.
Types of firmware
3.
What is OS?
3.1.
Types of OS
4.
Differences between Firmware and Operating System
5.
 
6.
 
7.
 
8.
 
9.
 
10.
 
11.
 
12.
 
13.
 
14.
 
15.
 
16.
Frequently Asked Questions
16.1.
What is the difference between firmware and software?
16.2.
What is OS?
16.3.
What is Firmware?
16.4.
Is Linux an operating system or a firmware?
16.5.
What is an example of firmware?
17.
Conclusion
Last Updated: Mar 27, 2024

Difference Between Firmware and Operating System

Author Alok Pandey
0 upvote
Roadmap to SDE career at Amazon
Speaker
Anubhav Sinha
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25 Jun, 2024 @ 01:30 PM
Operating Systems

Introduction

Which operating system are you using? Have you updated your firmware? You may have heard these questions a lot, so in this article, we will discuss the operating system and firmware and the differences between them.

Most people confuse firmware with software, yet firmware is not software. They do, however, include features that are similar to those found in software components. Operating systems are entire software packages that work with other software applications and device hardware.

Also Read, FCFS Scheduling Algorithm, Multiprogramming vs Multitasking

What is Firmware?

Firmware is a piece of software embedded in a specific piece of hardware. Firmware can be said as the updated or the modified version of the software. Its major purpose is to direct the hardware component to complete its work.

Video cards, cameras, stoves, refrigerators, and other equipment use the firmware. These integrated programs assist these devices in operating when users issue commands. As a result, firmware can be utilized in electronic and computer devices. Both main and secondary memory are controlled by firmware. It sends orders to RAM to obtain operating system codes, and another command copies the operating system code from ROM to RAM.

Types of firmware

The firmware is of different types depending on the device's hardware. On computer motherboards, firmware is provided (also called BIOS or UEFI). Firmware isn't limited to computer-based devices. Every gadget that can perform useful tasks, such as a television, washing machine, and even automobiles, contains firmware.

Click on the following link to read further: Multitasking Operating System

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What is OS?

An operating system (OS) is a software that serves as a medium between computer hardware and the user. It is a collection of programs that connects the end-user to the computer's hardware. It controls the computer's resources, including the processor, input and output devices, and secondary storage devices.

It acts as a controller, ensuring that various programs and users are logged in and do not interfere with the system. It provides security and safety while allowing users to simply access the system.

Types of OS

There are many parameters by which we divide operating system, such as Batch Operating System, Time-Sharing Operating Systems, and Distributed Operating System. The common operating systems are Windows, Linux, macOS, etc.
 

Must Read Process Management in OS

Differences between Firmware and Operating System

 

Firmware

Operating System

Meaning

Firmware is a piece of software that is embedded in a specific piece of hardware. They are the updated or the modified version of the software.

An operating system (OS) is a software that serves as a medium between computer hardware and the user. it is a collection of programs that connects the end-user to the computer's hardware

Location

It is stored in non-volatile memory(ROM).

It is stored on a hard disk.

Files Size

Generally, the firmware files are small

Mainly, the operating system carries vast files full of essential coding sets, which leads to a bigger size than firmware.

Languages

It is mainly  written in C or assembly language.

It uses the C++ and other programming language such as Python programming languages.

Purpose

The firmware's purpose is to manage specific hardware components. As a result, these are codes that are only used to operate one device.

The operating system is a multi-purpose application that manages the computer's various components. All hardware components are basically under its control.

Function

The firmware is designed to perform low-level tasks. For example, telling the keyboard to type a specific key or function in response to the user's order.

It handles high-level activities such as providing the end-user with a graphical user interface, multitasking, and so on.

Portability

It is built into the hardware and cannot be altered.

It is a computer programme that the user can install and modify.

Examples

Examples of devices that contain firmware are  video cards,  routers, ovens,keyboards,  fridges, washing machines,etc

Windows, Apple iOS, Mac, Android, Linux, and Ubuntu are examples of operating systems

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Must Read Multiprocessing Operating System

Also see,  Open Source Operating System

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between firmware and software?

In general, firmware refers to data that is fixed as part of a hardware device, whereas software refers to data that is used for interaction, productivity, and activities such as word processing, video editing, music listening, or video conferencing.

What is OS?

An operating system (OS) is a piece of software that serves as a medium between computer hardware and the user. it is a collection of programs that connects the end-user to the computer's hardware

What is Firmware?

Firmware is a piece of software that is embedded in a specific piece of hardware. They are the updated or the modified version of the software

Is Linux an operating system or a firmware?

Linux is an operating system, not firmware that performs a high level of task.

What is an example of firmware?

Embedded systems (such as traffic lights, consumer appliances, and digital watches), computers, computer peripherals, mobile phones, and digital cameras are all examples of devices that contain firmware.

Conclusion

In this article, we have extensively discussed the Difference between Firmware and Operating systems. We hope that this blog has helped you enhance your knowledge regarding Operating systems and firmware and also the difference between them.

Recommended Readings: 


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