Click here to see a PREVIEW of important rules that was posted before the summer session started.
This is an undergraduate course on computer operating systems. (But only graduate students are permitted to be in this class. USC undergraduate students must take CS 350 in order to get credit for OS. If you are an undergraduate student, you cannnot be in this class and you cannot get credit for Operating System if you take this class. Please check with your adviser to see which Operating System class you need to take!) In addition to exploring concepts such as synchronization, virtual memory, processes, file systems and virtualization, students will develop elements of a fairly complete operating system during the course of the semester.
(in reversed chronological order)
In the official syllabus, it is listed that the prerequisites are:
(CSCI 201L or CSCI 455x) and (EE 357 or EE 352L)Apparently, they are the prerequisites for undergraduate students only. The CS department would waive these prerequisites for graduate students. Since undergraduate students are required to take CS 350 for OS credit, there should only be graduate students enrolled in CS 402. Therefore, these prerequisites are really not prerequisites. They should be considered recommended preparation for graduate students. The basic idea behind these prerequisites is that you are expected to know how to program and you are expected to know something about computer architecture (such as what the CPU does).
The programming assignments of this class will be very demanding. You will be required to write C code. Since C is a proper subset of C++, knowing C++ well would give you enough background. However, some of the things that available in C++, such as strings and streams, are not be available in C. So, you need to know how to do things such as manipulating null-terminated array of characters (using functions such as strchr, strrchr, strlen, strcmp, strncpy, etc.) and performing console and file I/O (using functions such as printf/snprintf, fread/fwrite, read/write, fgets, etc.) in C. No other programming language will be accepted. We will not teach C in this class. You are expected to pick up C on your own if you are not familiar with it.
You should also get familiar with the Unix/Linux development environment (vi/pico/emacs, cc/gcc, make, etc.). You are expected to know how to use Unix/Linux. If you are not familiar with Unix/Linux, please read Unix for the Beginning Mage, a tutorial written by Joe Topjian. If you forgot how to use Unix, please summary of some commonly used Unix commands.
All programming assignments must run on a 32-bit Ubuntu 16.04 (Ubuntu 12.04 is acceptable if you have a machine with only 2GB of memory). The kernel programming assignments is meant to only run on a 32-bit Ubuntu 16.04. Therefore, you should install a 32-bit Ubuntu 16.04 (or Ubuntu 12.04 if your machine has only 2GB memory) on your laptop or desktop as soon as possible. If you do not have a personal laptop or desktop that runs Windows or Mac OS X, please contact the instructor as soon as possible.
These days, I have been using VagrantBox (i.e., Vagrant with Virtualbox) to install and run Ubuntu 16.04. I think it has a better integration with Windows 10 than other systems. If you are running Windows and you are comfortable with commandline interface to Linux/Unix systems (since Vagrant does not have a "desktop UI"), I would recommend installing Vagrant on your laptop/desktop.
If a student registered late for this class or could not be present at the beginning of the summer session, he/she is still required to turn all programming assignments on time or he/she will receive a score of 0 for these assignments. No exceptions!