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Operating System Concepts, Seventh Edition by Greg Gagne, Abraham Silberschatz, Peter Baer Galvin

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Chapter 14. Protection

The processes in an operating system must be protected from one another's activities. To provide such protection, we can use various mechanisms to ensure that only processes that have gained proper authorization from the operating system can operate on the files, memory segments, CPU, and other resources of a system.

Protection refers to a mechanism for controlling the access of programs, processes, or users to the resources defined by a computer system. This mechanism must provide a means for specifying the controls to be imposed, together with a means of enforcement. We distinguish between protection and security, which is a measure of confidence that the integrity of a system and its data will be preserved. Security assurance is a much broader topic than is protection, and we address it in Chapter 15.

Goals of Protection

As computer systems have become more sophisticated and pervasive in their applications, the need to protect their integrity has also grown. Protection was originally conceived as an adjunct to multiprogramming operating systems, so that untrustworthy users might safely share a common logical name space, such as a directory of files, or share a common physical name space, such ...

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