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Chapter: Operating Systems : File Systems

File System Storage

A file is a named collection of related information that is recorded on secondary storage.



1 File Concept


ü A file is a named collection of related information that is recorded on secondary storage.


ü From a user’s perspective, a file is the smallest allotment of logical secondary storage; that is, data cannot be written to secondary storage unless they are within a file.


   Examples of files:


   A text file is a sequence of characters organized into lines (and possibly pages).


   A source file is a sequence of subroutines and functions, each of which is further organized as declarations followed by executable statements. An object file is a sequence of bytes organized into blocks understandable by the system’s linker. An executable file is a series of code sections that the loader can bring into memory and execute.


2 File Attributes


            Name: The symbolic file name is the only information kept in human readable form.


            Identifier: This unique tag, usually a number identifies the file within the file system. It is the non-human readable name for the file.


            Type: This information is needed for those systems that support different types.


            Location: This information is a pointer to a device and to the location of the file on that device.


            Size: The current size of the file (in bytes, words or blocks)and possibly the maximum allowed size are included in this attribute.


            Protection: Access-control information determines who can do reading, writing, executing and so on.


            Time, date and user identification: This information may be kept for creation, last modification and last use. These data can be useful for protection, security and usage monitoring.


3 File Operations


v Creating a file

v Reading a file


v Repositioning within a file


v Deleting a file


v Truncating a file


4 File Types


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Operating Systems : File Systems : File System Storage |

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