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Operating Systems Research Paper

Operating Systems Research Paper

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Operating Systems Research Paper

Windows Vista

The list below is a highlight description of the minimum recommended hardware requirements for different Windows Vista versions for basic functionality. However, there is variance on the particular hardware requirements, which is dependent on system configuration, and features and programs intended for installation (Bott, 2007). A point to note is that additional hard disk space will be required if the installation process will be conducted over a network. The basic system hardware requirements for Windows Vista include a processor of 800 MHz 32-bit or 64-bit.

A minimum random access memory of 512MB will be required. A 9-class Direct X graphics card and 32megabytes for graphics memory will be sufficient for this program. A hard disk with 20-gigabyte capacity with a minimum 15 gigabyte to offer free space in the hard disk will also be required (Bott, 2007). System configuration that substitutes graphics memory with system memory will require a minimum system memory of 448 megabytes. This memory must be made available to the system after some graphics occupy the system memory.

Security Issues

Since its release in 2006 by Microsoft, Windows Vista has received significant security criticism from users and reviewers alike. In 2008, researchers established that the systems Bitlocker function exhibited vulnerability to a cold boot attack. In accordance with the research, the risk issue was capable of being mitigated with through a two-factor authentication configuration, for instance, a booting PIN together with TPM (Bride, 2007). Researchers showed that this could be achieved through using a disable of the power standby mode, and then and then using hardware capable of overwriting memory in the POST process, but only of the system did not shut down fully.

Security researchers Mark Dowd and Alexander Sotriov established that they had a come up with a method capable of bypassing various memory protection safeguards incorporated Windows Vista such as ASLR (address space layout randomization). The two researchers established that this finding meant that in Vistas case, any already existing buffer might not be exploitable if such features were interfered with. However, both Dowd and Sotriov this finding did not pinpoint vulnerability in the system (Bride, 2007). However, the two researchers regarded this as a security weakness in the systems protection mechanism. If the system does not exhibit vulnerability, then the finding could not apply.

Additionally, the operating system used in Windows Vista has exhibited defects in its responsive effectiveness to Malware attacks and worms. Users and researchers alike are vouching for Microsoft to provide a system capable of fending off malicious attacks and spy ware.

Benefits and Limitations

One benefit that comes with Windows Vista includes storage and salvage on the users work. The system allows automatic creation of restore points for the user’s daily work. Therefore, the user is capable of retrieving previous documents done at that may have been accidentally been deleted or overwritten. Additionally, the system is also incorporated with a wizard application that enables the user to back up automatically their documents as well as the entire hard disk. Moreover, the system includes a modified start menu with in built searching options. These functions allow the user to type in the item name they are searching for and instantly pop up.

The system also allows quick previews of folder contents. This is achieved through modifications on the folder icon allowing screenshots within. Additionally, Windows Vista allows multiple users a chance to link with each other through a network on different computers. This function allows secure and easy sharing of features and files through a shared wizard (Bride, 2007).

Despite the numerous benefits associated with Windows Vista, the system has been criticized for its several shortcomings. The main negative issue associated with Windows Vista is security issues. The system has been subject to security vulnerability issues as established by users and researchers such as Dowd and Sotriov. Another limitation of Windows Vista is the high standards required to install the system in the user’s PC. Some of these requirements are not easily available to every other person and therefore the system’s use is limited to a selected few. Additionally, the system has a higher requirement for power and thus has a higher than normal consumption of the resource. Compared to other operating systems such as XP, Windows Vista drains the laptop battery at a higher rate.

Conclusion

From the research conducted on Windows Vista as an operating system, the findings have revealed that the system bears quality and effectiveness when serving its purpose, but is hindered by minor limitations that could be rectified. For example, the system allows automatic creation of restore points for the user’s daily work. This was a major problem affecting many PC users in cases of lost or overwritten documents (Bott, 2007). On the other hand, the system has been criticized for its vulnerability in the security sector, and has been proven through viable examples by researchers. In my opinion, these kinds of problems are minor and Microsoft Company is well equipped to find viable solutions. Other than that, we found Windows Vista as a commendable operating system.

Reference

Bott, E., Siechert, C., & Stinson, C. (2007). Windows Vista inside out. Redmond, WA: Microsoft Press.

Bride, M. (2007). Windows vista. Blacklick, OH: McGraw-Hill.

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