operating system


: software that controls the operation of a computer and directs the processing of programs (as by assigning storage space in memory and controlling input and output functions)

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web The company is focused on creating an operating system for large-scale quantum computers that will deal with the error correction issue. Scott Kirsner, BostonGlobe.com, 17 Nov. 2022 Instead, PoisonWaffle3 installed TrueNAS, an open source operating system designed specifically for network file storage applications. Benj Edwards, Ars Technica, 27 Oct. 2022 In a speech last month (link in Chinese), Miao said the Chinese EV industry faces two key challenges: the lack of semiconductors, and the lack of an operating system. Mary Hui, Quartz, 14 Oct. 2022 If an operating system is like the appliances, electrical wiring, plumbing, and other infrastructure in the container home, that’s what Wolfi is vetting and pre-itemizing to ensure the security of everything in your container house. WIRED, 23 Sep. 2022 Back in the late 1990s, when one bought a personal computer, one also bought an operating system, Windows (much ... Ryan Ellis, National Review, 28 June 2022 In fact, anything beyond running an operating system and office suite may be a push. Matthew Humphries, PCMAG, 19 May 2022 Companies that go deepest with purpose take a much more comprehensive approach, treating purpose as an operating system and embedding it in processes, organizational structures, and culture. Ranjay Gulati, Fortune, 8 Mar. 2022 Even if that means not getting the most of an operating system like iOS or Android. Chris Smith, BGR, 18 Feb. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'operating system.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1961, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of operating system was in 1961

Dictionary Entries Near operating system

Cite this Entry

“Operating system.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/operating%20system. Accessed 4 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

operating system


: software that controls the operation of a computer and directs the processing of the user's programs (as by controlling input and output functions)

More from Merriam-Webster on operating system

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