FIT3046 - Operating environments - 2018

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.


Information Technology

Chief examiner(s)

Mr Johan Vorster

Unit guides


South Africa

  • First semester 2018 (On-campus)
  • Summer semester B 2018 (On-campus)


FIT1047 or FIT1031 or FIT1001


FIT2022, FIT2070, GCO2814, GCO3818


Processes and threads: interprocess communication, scheduling. Deadlock: detection, prevention, avoidance. Memory management: allocation, swapping, virtual memory. Input/output principles and examples: disks, graphical user interfaces, network terminals. File systems: files, directories, disk space management. Security: authentication, cryptography, common attacks, principles of secure system administration. Case studies: Characteristics of major PC operating systems such as Linux and Windows.


At the completion of this unit students should be able to:

  1. Describe the purpose, components and functions of operating systems;
  2. Describe and distinguish between various strategies used by different operating systems for efficiently managing system resources and running applications;
  3. Apply a range of algorithms used by operating systems for scheduling of processes and allocation of system resources;
  4. Apply strategies for inter-process communication and synchronization in multi-programming systems;
  5. Describe the use of various techniques for implementing security and protection of systems, resources, and users;
  6. Identify the principal differences between common major operating systems such as Windows and Linux.


Examination (2 hours): 50%; In-semester assessment: 50%

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload equals 12 hours per week comprising:

  1. Contact hours for on-campus students:
    • Two hours of lectures
    • One 2-hour laboratory
  2. Additional requirements (all students):
    • A minimum of 8 hours independent study per week for completing lab and project work, private study and revision.

See also Unit timetable information

Additional information on this unit is available from the faculty at: