Glossary
Chapter 4
administrator account Computer account held by computer and network administrators that enables them to access all files and programs on the computer or network, install programs, and specify settings that affect all users on a computer or network.
adware remover Program that detects and deletes adware from a user's computer.
anti-spam program Program that attempts to remove spam before it reaches a user's inbox.
antivirus program Program that protects a computer against viruses by identifying and removing any computer viruses found in memory, on storage media, or on incoming files.
automatic update Operating system feature that automatically provides updates to a program.
backup utility Utility program that allows users to copy, or back up, selected files or an entire hard disk to another storage medium, such as another hard disk, optical disc, USB flash drive, or tape.
booting Process of starting or restarting a computer.
buffer Segment of memory or storage in which items are placed while waiting to be transferred from an input device or to an output device.
cold boot Process of turning on a computer that has been powered off completely.
command-line interface Type of user interface in which a user types commands or presses special keys on the keyboard (such as function keys or key combinations) to enter data and instructions.
defragmenting Reorganizing a disk so that the files are stored in contiguous sectors, thus speeding up disk access and the performance of the entire computer.
disc burning software Utility program that writes text, graphics, audio, and video files to a recordable or rewritable CD, DVD, or Blu-ray Disc.
disk cleanup Utility that searches for and removes unnecessary files.
disk defragmenter Utility that reorganizes the files and unused space on a computer's hard disk so that the operating system accesses data more quickly and programs run faster.
driver Small program that tells an operating system how to communicate with a specific device. See also device driver.
embedded operating system The operating system that resides on a ROM chip inside most PDAs and small devices.
file compression utility Utility program that shrinks the size of a file(s), so that the file takes up less storage space than the original file.
file manager Utility that performs functions related to file management.
folder Specific named location on a storage medium that contains related documents.
graphical user interface (GUI) Type of user interface that allows a user to interact with software using text, graphics, and visual images, such as icons.
hibernate Operating system function that saves any open documents and programs to a hard disk before removing power from the computer.
image viewer Utility that allows users to display, copy, and print the contents of a graphics file, such as a photo.
Linux Popular, multitasking UNIX-type operating system.
log on To access a computer or network as a user.
Mac OS X Multitasking operating system that is the latest version of the Macintosh operating system.
Macintosh operating system Operating system for Apple's Macintosh computer.
media player Utility program that allows you to view images and animation, listen to audio, and watch video files.
memory management Operating system activity that optimizes the use of random access memory (RAM).
multiprocessing In reference to operating systems, supports two or more processors running programs at the same time.
multiuser In reference to operating systems, enables two or more users to run programs simultaneously.
operating system (OS) Set of programs containing instructions that work together to coordinate all the activities among computer hardware devices.
password Private combination of characters associated with a user name that allows access to certain computer resources.
performance monitor Operating system program that assesses and reports information about various computer resources and devices.
personal computer maintenance utility Utility program that identifies and fixes operating system problems, detects and repairs disk problems, and includes the capability of improving a computer's performance.
personal firewall Utility program that detects and protects a personal computer from unauthorized intrusions.
phishing Scam in which a perpetrator attempts to obtain your personal and/or financial information.
phishing filter Program that warns or blocks you from potentially fraudulent or suspicious Web sites.
Plug and Play Technology that gives a computer the capability to configure adapter cards and other peripherals automatically as a user installs them.
pop-up blocker Filtering program that stops pop-up ads from displaying on Web pages.
queue Lineup of multiple print jobs within a buffer.
restore utility Program that reverses the backup process and returns backed up files to their original form.
screen saver Utility program that causes a display device's screen to show a moving image or blank screen if no mouse activity occurs for a specified time.
search utility Program that attempts to locate a file on your computer based on criteria you specify.
server operating system Operating system that organizes and coordinates how multiple users access and share resources on a network.
service pack Free downloadable software updates provided by the software manufacturer to users who have registered and/or activated their software.
sleep mode Operating system function that saves any open documents and programs to RAM, turns off all unneeded functions, and then places the computer in a low-power state.
spam Unsolicited e-mail message or newsgroups posting sent to many recipients or newsgroups at once.
spooling Operating system process that sends documents to be printed to a buffer instead of sending them immediately to the printer.
spyware remover Program that detects and deletes spyware and other similar programs on a user's computer.
stand-alone operating system Complete operating system that works on a desktop computer, notebook computer, or mobile computing device.
system software Programs that control or maintain the operations of a computer and its devices.
Trojan horse Malicious-logic program named after the Greek myth that hides within or looks like a legitimate program.
uncompress To restore a compressed, or zipped, file to its original form. See also unzip.
uninstaller Utility program that removes a program, as well as any associated entries in the system files.
UNIX Multitasking operating system that now is available for most computers of all sizes.
user ID Unique combination of characters, such as letters of the alphabet and/or numbers, that identifies a specific user. See also user name.
user interface The portion of software that defines how a user interacts with a computer, including how the user enters data and instructions and how information is displayed on the screen.
user name Unique combination of characters, such as letters of the alphabet and/or numbers, that identifies a specific user.
utility Type of system software that allows a user to perform maintenance-type tasks, usually related to managing a computer, its devices, or its programs.
utility program Type of system software that allows a user to perform maintenance-type tasks usually related to managing a computer, its devices, or its programs.
virtual memory A portion of a storage medium, usually the hard disk, that the operating system allocates to function as additional RAM.
virus Potentially damaging computer program that affects, or infects, a computer negatively by altering the way the computer works without a user's knowledge or permission.
warm boot Process of using the operating system to restart a computer.
Web filtering software Program that restricts access to certain material on the Web.
Windows 7 Microsoft's fastest, most efficient operating system to date, offering quicker program start up, built-in diagnostics, automatic recovery, improved security, enhanced searching and organizing capabilities, and an easy-to-use interface.
Windows Aero Interface for computers with more than 1 GB of RAM that provides an enhanced visual look, additional navigation options, and animation.
Windows ReadyBoost Windows feature that can increase the size of memory by allocating available storage space on removable flash memory devices as additional memory cache.
worm Malicious-logic program that copies itself repeatedly, using up system resources and possibly shutting down the system.
zipped files Type of compressed files that usually have a .zip extension.