Department of Computing Science
Introduction to Computer Systems
Umeå universitet


A small wordlist

Computerterms and explanations

Here follows a list with some common words and terms used when using computers.

Word A popular GUI word processor, originally text-based and run under DOS
CS CS stands for the department of Computer Science.
Operating system Computer software used on a computer. Without the OS the computer is pretty useless.
Windows An OS from Microsoft, used on most desktop computers today. If you are unsure which OS you have, it is probably some version of Windows.
Unix Another OS, for a long time used on mainframes and large computers only. Today it can be run on an ordinary computer. Linux is loosely considered a flavour of Unix.
The file system A tree structure on computer systems where files and directories are stored. In Windows the tree uses drive letters (C:\, H:\), and in Unix everything lies under the same root directory (/).
Folder A folder resides in a file system and can hold files and/or other folders. Also called directories
MB A short term for Megabyte. A byte consists of eight bits (binary digits), which is what most often is used to store a character. Mega, in the computer world, means 2^20 = 1048576, as opposed to the scientific Mega (10^6), which is written Mi. MB is used to describe file sizes, among other things.
Account An account is a combination of a username and a password that lets you log in to a computer system at CS.
Username This is your name in the computer systems, in our case the part before in your e-mail address.
Password To prevent unauthorized people from logging in to another user's account you are given a password. Keep this to yourself.
Logging in When you log in your username and password are authenticated against the computer system, making sure that it is actually you trying to log in.
Logging out When you are logging out the computer will get ready for another person to log in. Make sure that you log out or someone may use your account to perform illicit actions.

Department of Computing Science
Ume University
The information on this page was modified 2014-09-12
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