Difference between Operating System and Kernel

ComputersOperating SystemKernel

Operating System

Operating System manages a computer and acts as an interface between user and computer. Operting system is the first program that starts when a computer is booted up.


Kernel is the core component of the operating system and is responsible to convert user commands to machine level language commands.

Following are the important differences between Operating System and Kernel.

Sr. No.KeyOperating SystemKernel
1TypeOperating system is a system software.Kernel is a part of operating system.
2WorkOperating system acts as an interface between user and hardware.Kernel acts as an interface between applications and hardware.
3Main tasksEase of doing system operations, security etc.Memory management, space management, process management and task management.
4BasisA computer need Operating System to run.An Operating System needs Kernel to run.
5TypesOperating Systems types are multiuser, multitasking, multiprocessor, realtime, distributed etc.Kernel types are monolithic kernel and micro kernel.
6BootOperating System is the first program to load when computer boots up.Kernel is the first program to load when operating system loads.
Updated on 28-Nov-2019 10:30:52