OS Input/Output Devices

A computer system's input and output operations are handled by the devices known as input/output devices. These devices are responsible for the input and output processes.

Basically, there are two types of input/output devices:

  • Block devices
  • Character devices

Block Devices

A block device organizes the data it stores into blocks, each of which has a predetermined size and its own address.

When working with a block device, it is possible to read and write each individual block in a manner that is independent of the others.

No matter where the arm is at the moment, it is always possible to seek another cylinder in the case of a disc and then wait for the necessary block to rotate under the head. This is true regardless of the location of the arm. A disc is an example of a device that can be addressed in blocks.

The terms "USB cameras", "hard disc", and "CD-ROM drive" are also examples of block devices. "flash drives" are another type of block device. In order to facilitate your comprehension, I have provided the examples.

Character Devices

A character device is one that can take in and deliver a stream of characters regardless of any block structure that may be present.

It is not possible to address the character device. On the character device, there is no seek operation that can be performed.

A computer system has an excessive number of character devices, such as printers, mice, rats, network interfaces, and so on. These four are the most common devices utilized by character devices. Ports that are either serial or parallel, as well as sound cards, are all examples of character devices.

This post has been written and published in order to provide you with information about the various input/output device types that are managed by the operating system. This post will not discuss the input/output devices for computers, as that is a question asked by the vast majority of readers. If you are interested in learning more about input and output devices, then you may find the following two posts to be of interest to you:

Operating System Quiz


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