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All about computers

If you're reading this, then the chances are that you are sitting in front of a desktop PC or a laptop. Less common but becoming increasingly more popular, is the use of tablet devices and smart phones for browsing the web. However, there are three main and distinct operating systems that are in use today. This article shall be looking at these and all about computers.

Common operating systems and computers

There are three main operating systems that are used in IT technology today, be it at home or in the office: Windows, Mac OS X and Linux. Of all these, Windows (in it's incarnations as XP, Vista and 7) has an approximate market share of 80%. Following a long way behind, is Mac OS X with about 7.5% and even lower down the scale is Linux at just 2%. Here, the top two will be discussed.

Windows XP / Vista / 7 and related hardware

'Modern' versions of Windows came with the advent of Windows XP. XP is still so popular in fact that it is still used on 38% of all laptops and desktops in the world. Following on from XP came Vista. Vista was heavily criticised upon its release. One of the main criticisms was the fact that it required a fairly meaty system to be able to run proficiently. After the somewhat disappointing release of Vista, Microsoft released Windows 7 - whilst it had a similar look and feel to Vista, it had been vastly overhauled and was a pleasure to use in comparison. Hardware requirements Any manufacturer can create hardware to run any of the three main versions of Windows on, with Microsoft making its money by selling licensed copies of Windows with these systems. The fact that there is such competition between the many manufacturers is only a good thing for the PC, mainly in terms of cost.

Mac OS X and related hardware

Mac OS X has had various upgrades throughout its history and was a major step forward from the old Mac OS operating system. Mac hardware Apple builds its own hardware to run its operating system on and these systems are more often than not at a premium price. This said, they were pioneers in getting rid of the classic 'beige tower' image of traditional PCs: indeed, the all in one PC that was the iMac was unlike anything anyone had ever seen before. Boot Camp With the advent of Apple switching from PowerPC processors to using those created by Intel, Apple's Boot Camp technology allows users to run copies of Windows on a separate partition of their hard drive. However, to get Mac OS X to run on anything but Apple hardware is extremely difficult.

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