Systems software is software which is essential for the computer in order to run. Without systems software the computer will be unable to function properly. There are two pieces of system software which you need to be aware of

It is important to make the distinction that commonly used software or extra software installed on a computer is not systems software. For example Microsoft word is, although essential for a lot of people, not systems software (it is an example of an generic applications software). Also file explorer, as noted earlier, is a utility and not systems software. This may seem strange seeing that it is installed with the operating system but it is important to remember that the operating system is largely unseen by the user. The graphical user interface, GUI, is what the user sees and is NOT part of the operating system. It is merely supplied with the operating system. Operating system will be looked at in ore detail later in the course and also at A2.