Handout 1: 1/20/99
Operating Systems
CPSC 410-501
Lecture: MWF 11:30-12:20, HRBB 113
Web pages: http://www.csdl.tamu.edu/~furuta/410/

Instructor: Richard Furuta, HRBB 402C, 845-3839, furuta@cs.tamu.edu
Office hours: Monday 3-4, Wednesday 4-5, or by appointment
Teaching assistant: Yves Meylan, HRBB 328B, 845-1871, ymeylan@cs.tamu.edu
Office hours: TBA

Required textbook:
Silberschatz and Galvin, Operating System Concepts (fifth edition).

Approximate Grading Scheme:

  20%     Exam one (2/19/99)
  20%     Exam two (tentatively on 4/7/99)
  10%	  Final exam (5/12/99)
   5%	  Short quizzes
  15%	  Homework assignments
  30%     Programming lab assignments

Rough course schedule (based on Silberschatz and Galvin, parts 1 through 7):

Any remaining time will go for examinations and project sessions.


  1. We will use electronic mail for announcements. To receive the class announcements, you need to register your email address. Send an email message to listproc@csdl.tamu.edu, with a body of
    	SUBSCRIBE CPSC410 your name
    where you make the obvious replacement of your name with your name. Note that this host is not the regular CS department computer. Class messages also will be archived at the course's Web site (see above for location). You should check your account for mail regularly.
  2. If you need to get in touch with me and I am not in my office, please use electronic mail.
  3. The course Web site will be updated regularly to contain information of importance to the class. This will include reading assignments, copies of handouts, copies of slides, and the course's working schedule. You should check it regularly.
  4. I will guarantee 10% bands for final grades. By this, I mean that a student with 90% or more of the total possible points will receive an A. A student with between 80% and 90% of the points will receive no lower than a B, 70%-80% no lower than a C, and 60%-70% no lower than a D.
  5. Examinations will be comprehensive and will cover all course material to date (e.g., both lecture, laboratory, text, and discussions).
  6. Short quizzes will be given from time to time in class. They will be a few questions in length and only will require part of the class. They will be announced approximately one class session in advance.
  7. Examinations and quizzes are closed book. You will be permitted to prepare and use a one page review sheet for examinations (but not quizzes). Use or non-use of calculators will be determined based on the characteristics of the individual exam or quiz.
  8. If you know in advance that you will miss an exam date, I will attempt to try and accommodate your conflict by permitting you to take the examination early. The availability of this option is not guaranteed--among other factors it depends on the availability of a time to take the examination and the availability of the exam. This applies to exam one, exam two, and the final exam.
  9. There will be no additional makeup examinations or quizzes. If you have a valid medical excuse, the examination/quiz component of your grade will be computed based on the other examinations/quizzes.
  10. Assignments are due at the beginning of class on the due date. Due dates will be set to give ample time for completion of the project and will not be extended save for the unexpected and unlikely major, long-lived catastrophe. Individual accommodations will be discussed if you have a valid medical excuse. Start projects early--last minute computer malfunctions will not be accepted as reason for delaying an assignment's due date. Changes to an assignment's due date will be avoided because they are unfair to those students who have organized their time to complete the assignment. Late assignments will be decremented by 30% per class day or fraction of day late, starting at class time.
  11. Assignment grades will be based on correctness and on style, including the neatness, readability, and clarity of exposition.
  12. You may use whatever computing resources you wish for assignments but "at your own risk," unless otherwise specified in the assignment. No alterations to conditions of the assignment will be made to accommodate peculiarities of your other computing resources. Note in particular that we will ask for electronic as well as paper versions of your assignments and will require that the electronic version run on a particular computer configuration.
  13. Unless otherwise specified, cooperation on programming assignments is to be limited to general discussion of the problem (not the solution), and assistance with syntactic errors. Further cooperation is not permitted. Any attempt to falsely represent the correctness of your program is not permitted. Any attempt to prevent or delay other members of the class from completing an assignment is not permitted. Taking part in any of these proscribed activities is (for all involved) grounds for course failure and referral to the University for further sanctions.