Today : Sun, 01 Aug 21 .

CS 537 - Operating Systems - Spring 2013

HomePage Discussion Moodle Instructors Schedule Lectures Sections Readings Homeworks


edit SideBar


Page: Main.HomePage - Last Modified : Fri, 10 May 13

CS 537: Operating Systems


  • Project 5 has been posted and is due Thursday, May 9th.
  • Readings on distributed file systems posted to readings page.
  • Quiz on Wednesday, 5/8 in section covering condition variables, deadlock, virtual machines, and distributed file systems
  • Class meetings in Computer Sciences 1240 on May 7,9 and 9.



Welcome to your first Wisconsin Operating Systems course. This course will describe a number of topics including basic operating system structure, process and thread synchronization and concurrency, file systems and storage servers, memory management techniques, process scheduling and resource management, system security, and a few other "hot" topics.

This course assumes familiarity with basic computer organization (e.g., processors, memory, and I/O devices as covered in cs354) and data structures (e.g., stacks and hash tables). You will need to be able to program in C (not C++, and definitely not Java) to perform the assignments in the course. If you don't have much experience in this language, don't worry (too much), we will spend some time covering background, but of course, learning on your own is important and valuable (in this class and in real life). For those of you who are new to C (e.g., you just know Java), realize this is an opportunity to broaden your skill set! (i.e., stop complaining).

The class consists of twice-weekly lectures and a once-a-week sections. Attendance at the section is mandatory, as we will have quizzes there and discuss projects. It is not possible to attend section from the Prof. Arpaci-Dusseau's class.


We recommend coming to class and reading the book in advance, before we cover a topic in class

We will use the following textbook:

Operating Systems: Three Easy Peices, v0.5
Chapters Online:
Purchase printed book
Purchase ebook

You should also own:

The C Programming Language (2nd edition)
Kernighan and Ritchie
ISBN: 0-13-110362-8 (paperback)
Prentice Hall


You are expected to present your own original work in this class. Any material produced by others but submitted as your own work will be considered cheating and will receive a grade of zero.


In this course, you will be doing group progects. More information is available on the Projects page. All projects will be done in the C language.

Here is a short, free, and incomplete overview of the C programming environment by Andrea Arpaci-Dusseau as a PDF.

It would also be useful to figure out how to use the debugger, gdb.

Here is a link to a short tutorial -- there are others on the web too. Learning how to use such tools is a good idea.


There will be 8 quizes during the discussion section over the course of the semester. The lowest score will be dropped. The quizes will be closed-book, closed-note and will cover material from the lecture.


There will be an optional final.

For the exam, a single page "cheat sheet" (8.5 by 11 inches) is allowed, and you can use both sides; exams are otherwise closed-book and closed-note. The final is scheduled for Saturday, May 18th at 7:45 am.


Task Without FinalWith Final

Assignments are due at the start of class on the date listed on the handout. Late assignments will receive no credit .

Grades will be listed with the Learn@UW.

Mailing List

The mailing list address is compsci537-2-s13 "at"

Powered by PmWiki
Skin by CarlosAB

looks borrowed from
More skins here