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What Is an NOS?

A network operating system is software that imparts special capabilities to a computer. These capabilities revolve around the fact that the configuration of the computer with an NOS makes that computer a server (a server being a computer that can "serve up" resources to computers requesting them). The NOS, in effect, makes the server the control center for all requests made by client computers as they attempt to access resources on the LAN.

Network operating systems come in two basic flavors: network operating systems that function as complete operating systems, such as the Microsoft Windows 2000 Server, and network operating systems that are added on top of an existing OS. For example, the Novell NetWare NOS is added to a computer that runs the DOS operating system.


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