OS/2 Warp FAQ List (20 Feb 95) Section 0700
following terms are often used in conjunction with OS/2 Warp:
- A bug fix which has been (or will be) created by IBM to address a very
specific problem. (Example: "Please send me APAR 09761.")
- Adaptec SCSI Programming Interface: a standard set of services
used by backup, scanning, and other types of software which require
access to a SCSI adapter. OS/2 Warp comes with ASPI support for
DOS, Windows, and OS/2 applications.
- Free, full fledged applications included with OS/2 Warp
at no extra charge. The BonusPak includes HyperAccess, Faxworks,
Person to Person, the Internet Connection, Compuserve Information
Manager, Video IN, IBM Works, and other applications. These applications
not only demonstrate how powerful and easy-to-use OS/2 Warp really is,
but they also let you get to work (or play!) right out-of-the-box.
- "Configuration/Installation/Distribution": a term usually
used to refer to the ability to install an operating system or application
remotely, over a network. (Example: "IBM TCP/IP 2.0 for
OS/2 is now CID-enabled.") See (4.2)
Installing from Drive B.
- "Corrective Service Diskette(s)": see (4.6)
Corrective Service Diskettes.
- "Direct Access Storage Device": disk space (most
commonly a hard disk drive). (Example: "I do not have
enough DASD for this new application.")
- "Distributed Computing Environment": an open
software standard, created by the Open Software Foundation and
backed by IBM and other vendors, which allows for applications to
operate across a network and distribute the workload without a
significant investment in programming. DCE supports common
directory services (for accessing resources on a network), security
(for preventing unauthorized or runaway applications from
wreaking havoc on a network), and other management features. OS/2
Warp is a key platform for DCE, and IBM produces the most advanced
implementations of DCE available on the market.
- "Direct Memory Access": circuitry provided on all
PCs to allow peripherals (such as disk controllers) to transfer data
to memory directly, without the assistance of the computer's
processor. Appropriate use of DMA can often help to improve overall
- "DOS Protected Mode Interface: a method used by some DOS
applications (including Windows) to access memory beyond 640K on 80286 (or later)
processors. OS/2 Warp can provide DPMI memory to DOS and Windows
applications. See EMS and XMS.
- "Extended Attribute": up to 64K of assorted data
stored with any file under OS/2. Such data may include file type
(e.g. "Plain Text"), icons, comments, and other information
which is best left outside the file itself. Only OS/2 applications
can create and modify extended attributes.
- "Expanded Memory Specification": one of several
types of memory (beyond 640K) that can be used by certain DOS
applications. OS/2 Warp can provide EMS memory to DOS
applications. See DPMI and XMS.
- "Extended Services": see (3.10)
- "File Allocation Table": the disk format introduced
by DOS. See HPFS.
- "General Availability": available for purchase
as a shrinkwrapped product from IBM and its dealers.
- "High Performance File System": see
(1.5) High Performance File System.
- "Installable File
System": refers to an OS/2 driver used to manage
a file system type. Available IFSes include NFS (used with
TCP/IP networks), CD-ROM, HPFS, and HPFS386 (supplied
with IBM LAN Server Advanced).
- "Initial Program Load": starting a PC's
operating system (i.e. booting or rebooting). (Example:
"Please IPL your system now.") See also RIPL.
- "Independent Software Vendor": a software developer,
other than the provider of the operating system (such as IBM and
OS/2), which produces applications for that operating system (e.g.
Borland is an OS/2 ISV, producing Borland C++ for OS/2).
- "Limited Availability": available only from IBM
to certain customers.
- Running two or more applications "simultaneously," dividing the
computer processor's attention among them. (In fact, the two or more
applications only appear to run simultaneously because the processor switches
between them rapidly.) Cooperative multitasking, such as that
found in Microsoft Windows and Macintosh System 7, requires that each
application be written so as to "surrender" the computer's
processor at regular intervals so that it can devote attention to other
running applications. If one application for some reason refuses to
yield the processor, all other applications stop running. Preemptive
multitasking, as found in OS/2 and Unix, for example, leaves the
operating system in charge of delegating processor time to each running
application. The amount of attention given depends on the operating
scheduler, the logic which assesses (and perhaps adjusts) the
priorities of various tasks and assigns processor attention accordingly.
- An operating system's ability to manage what are sometimes called
lightweight processes, namely subtasks which are spawned by
applications. For example, a word processor may be written so that
any printing operation is put in a separate thread. This
thread is then run alongside the word processor itself, in the background,
so that control returns immediately to the user of the word
processor. OS/2 1.0 was the first major operating system to
support threads. See multitasking.
- The basic unit of interaction in OS/2 Warp. In some environments,
such as Windows, users work only with files. In other environments,
such as the Macintosh, users work with documents and applications. In
OS/2 Warp, users work with objects (of which files and documents are but two
types). OS/2 is easy to use because objects are generally not
restricted in the ways they can be used based on computer-oriented
restrictions (such as the length of names for objects). Rather,
objects can be treated in very similar ways when using OS/2, with
differences related to more human ideas of how things behave. For
example, in OS/2 Warp every object (including the desktop itself, which
is a folder-type object) has a pop-up menu, brought up with a click of
the second mouse button. Printer objects have unique menu options
(such as Change Status and Set Default). Likewise, document objects
have other possible menu selections (such as Print). Disk objects
have Format. But the whole point is that the user, not the computer,
dictates how objects can be used and manipulated, insofar as possible.
- A set of technologies (slated for inclusion in OS/2 Warp
in 1995) which, together, will deliver unprecendented flexibility
in the way applications and objects can be combined,
manipulated, and transformed by people using computers. OpenDoc
recognizes that people are creating more and more complex documents,
including documents which contain embedded runnable code (such as
multimedia sound and video clips which activate with a mouse
click), and they need a way to store, manage, link, and revise
such documents, without unnecessary complexity. OpenDoc is
a standard supported by members of the Component Integration
Laboratories, including IBM, Apple, WordPerfect, Lotus,
Novell/Wordperfect, and many other vendors. SOM
is a key technology found in OpenDoc (and the Workplace Shell and its
applications, including IBM Works, demonstrate several aspects of
OpenDoc technology today).
- "Presentation Manager": the underlying services used
by programmers and the Workplace Shell (see WPS) to provide
windows, scroll bars, dialog boxes, and other essential interface
- "Problem Management Record": a number assigned
by IBM to track a customer-reported problem. (Example: "I
have opened PMR Number 9X534; please reference this number if you
- "Point-to-Point Protocol": a standard communications
method used to carry network protocols (especially TCP/IP) over a
modem, ISDN, or other serial connection. Although PPP requires more
overhead than SLIP, it is considered its successor. PPP
is available, free of charge, for OS/2 Warp's Internet Connection.
- "Remote Initial Program Load": the capability to
boot (start) a PC (load its operating system) over a network. See
- Refers to the ability to run Windows applications alongside
OS/2 and DOS applications on the Workplace Shell (see WPS)
desktop as opposed to the full screen Win-OS/2 desktop. (Example:
"Will this video driver support seamless Windows?")
- "Serial Line Internet Protocol": or a means of
sending TCP/IP network traffic over a modem or
ISDN connection. SLIP is used when connecting to an Internet
provider (such as the IBM Global Network) using OS/2 Warp's
- "Symmetric Multiprocessing": a set of technologies
in which two or more computer processors (CPUs) are managed by one
operating system to provide greater computing power to applications. With
SMP, processors are treated more or less equally (with applications able
to run on any or perhaps all processors in the system, interchangeably,
at the operating system's discretion). Simple MP usually
involves assigning each processor to a fixed task (such as managing
the file system), reserving the single main CPU for general tasks. OS/2
for SMP provides true SMP capabilities on a variety of systems, including
those which are compatible with the Intel MPS (Multiprocessing
Specification) 1.1 standard.
- "System Object Model": the underlying design which
allows applications running on OS/2 Warp to be so tightly
integrated, able to share data and, indeed, runnable objects
quickly and easily. The Workplace Shell is the largest
and most complex OS/2 application based on SOM, but there are many
other applications which use SOM extensively (such as IBM Works,
cc:Mail for OS/2, Chipchat Wireless Communicator, IBM Workframe 2.1,
DeScribe Version 5, Mesa for OS/2, and more). For programmers, SOM
is fully compliant with CORBA standards, fully distributable (over a
network) without any programming changes,
and is true object technology, with inheritance, encapsulation, and
polymorphism. SOM objects running on OS/2 Warp are fully protected
from one another and do not share the same address space. SOM is one
of the key technologies in OpenDoc, is available on many
other platforms, and has been declared a U.S. Federal Government
open software standard.
- "Service Pak": see CSD. Sometimes numbered
(e.g. "SP 2") to refer to a particular Service Pak.
- A company founded by IBM and Apple (with Hewlett-Packard also a
major shareholder) with a mission to create a set of object-oriented
software technologies, including the Taligent frameworks, for use
by its parent companies in their products (including OS/2 Warp).
- "Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol": a
protocol, widely available and implemented across a huge range of
systems, which allows information to be transmitted across a
network. TCP/IP is the protocol used by the Internet, and it is used
over a SLIP connection in OS/2 Warp's built-in Internet Connection.
- "Universal Resource Locator": standard notation for
locating and accessing information on the Internet which is used
with a World Wide Web browser (such as the IBM Web Explorer).
- IBM's customized version of Windows, based on Microsoft's own
source code, which provides compatibility with Windows applications
under OS/2. Windows is not emulated when it runs under OS/2; a
real copy of Windows, only slightly modified, is used. OS/2 Warp is
available both with and without Win-OS/2. The version of OS/2 Warp
without Win-OS/2 is designed to use an existing copy of Windows or
Windows for Workgroups (if present) to run Windows applications under
OS/2 Warp. When running this way, that copy of Windows or Windows for
Workgroups is also often called Win-OS/2.
- Workplace OS
- A set of technologies (not a product itself) which IBM is using
to create future versions of OS/2 Warp (such as OS/2 Warp for PowerPC) and
other operating systems. Key to this set of technologies is the IBM
Microkernel (based on the Carnegie-Mellon Mach microkernel) and the
ability to support multiple "personalities." Workplace OS
technology allows IBM (and, in fact, other vendors) to create portable,
reliable operating systems which are easily reconfigured to meet the needs
of any buyer.
- "Workplace Shell": OS/2 Warp's most commonly used user
interface which provides icons, folders, drag-and-drop configuration,
settings notebooks, and other features necessary for user interaction
with the operating system and its applications.
- "Extended Memory Specification": a method used by
some DOS applications for accessing extended memory (beyond 640K)
on 80286 (or better) processors. OS/2 Warp can provide XMS memory to
DOS applications. See DPMI and EMS.
(0.4) Special Report on OS/2 Warp
(1.5) High Performance File System (HPFS)
(3.10) Extended Services
(3.16) Image Scanners
(4.2) Installing from Drive B
(4.6) Corrective Service Diskettes
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