The Kernel

As its name implies, the kernel is at the core of each UNIX system and is loaded in whenever the system is started up -referred to as a boot of the system.

It manages the entire resources of the system, presenting them to you and every other user as a coherent system. You do not need to know anything about the kernel in order to use a UNIX system. This information is provided for your information only.

Amongst the functions performed by the kernel are:

   - managing the machine's memory and allocating it
     to each process.
   - scheduling the work done by the CPU so that
     the work of each user is carried out as
     efficiently as is possible.
   - organising the transfer of data from one part
     of the machine to another.
   - accepting instructions from the shell and
     carrying them out.
   - enforcing the access permissions that are in
     force on the file system.

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