28020 - Operating Systems T

Course Unit Page

  • Teacher Anna Ciampolini

  • Credits 9

  • SSD ING-INF/05

  • Language Italian

  • Campus of Bologna

  • Degree Programme First cycle degree programme (L) in Computer Engineering (cod. 0926)

Academic Year 2015/2016

Learning outcomes

Knowledge of the principles of modern operating systems. System programming and concurrent programming capabilities.

Course contents


  • Role, functionality and organization of the operating system.
  • Operating systems historical evolution.
  • O.S architecture: monolitic kernel vs. microkernel approach; virtual machines, modular OS.
  • The architecture of Unix/Linux.

  • The role of the OS in process management.
  • Processes and threads: representation, management and interaction.
  • CPU scheduling.
  • Unix process management.
  • Thread management in Linux.

Process syncronization

  • Concurrent programs; precedence graphs.
  • Processes and resources. Deadlock.
  • The shared memory model:
    • The mutual exclusion problem.
    • The semaphore; semaphore implementation in mono-processor and multi-processor architectures.
    • The monitor and its implementation.
    • Thread synchronization in Java.

The message passing model
  • Message passing classification.
  • Asynchronous send; synchronous send; RPC.
  • Signals.
  • Interaction among Unix processes: pipe, fifo and signals.

 Memory management

  • Classification of techniques for memory allocation. Paging and segmentation.
  • Virtual memory.
  • Memory management in Unix/Linux.

Shell Scripting
  • The Linux bash shell
  • main bash commands
  • command redirection and piping
  • command parsing
  • Control structures
  • Development of shell scripts
I/O management
  • The architecture of the I/ O subsystem. Device drivers.
  • I/O management through program control, interrupts and DMA.


P. Ancilotti, M. Boari, A. Ciampolini, G. Lipari: Sistemi Operativi, seconda edizione, McGraw-Hill, 2008.
P.Ancilotti, M.Boari: "Programmazione Concorrente e Distribuita", McGraw-Hill, 2006.

Teaching methods

Lectures will take into account both theoretical and implementative issues about modern operating systems.
Practical issues will be deepened  via individual concurrent programming practice in  laboratory.

Assessment methods

Final verification will take into account the results of:

  • A practical examination (in Lab) consisting in the development of concurrent programs in Unix/Linux and Java environments
  • An oral examination.

Teaching tools

Lessons: use of a videoprojector for showing slides.

Lab hours:
each student can use a personal computer for practice (two hours/week, during lab hours)

Links to further information


Office hours

See the website of Anna Ciampolini