School of Computer Science & Engineering
University of New South Wales
Advanced Operating Systems
Course Surveys 2019
Gernot's Comments on myExperience Course Survey
Nice to see all the positive feedback!
I'm only going to address the comments under “what could be improved?”
- The project begins before we can get a good understanding of
There is an inherent challenge here: To make the project fit we
have to get you started as quickly as possible. We do our best by
covering in the first week's lectures all you need to get to use
the kernel, and adding more insight on why these things work this
way later. And there is plenty of support from tutors. This seems
to work well with most students, and I don't really see how we
could improve here, but am open to suggestions.
I think we were lucky to get lectures scheduled on Mon and Tue. If
they were later in the week, that would have made things more difficult...
- Lecture contents could have more material related to the
project. More tutors to answer question.
We cover as much as needed for the project, and provide plenty of
help beyond. It is core to this course that hand-holding is
minimised and students learn to ask the right questions of tutors
(and docs). If there are specific suggestions on what else should
be covered (without watering the project down) then I'm open to
Re tutor availability: We had a consult every day and were
monitoring consult utilisation, shifting tutors to maximise
availability. Interestingly the utilisation patterns change every
year, so it's impossible to get this right beforehand. We do what
we can, but it seems in general the consults worked well.
- I can't think of any reason for doing System call interface
before actually implemented virtual memory management. Basically we
need to rewrite most of the I/O syscalls when doing virtual memory
And some parts of the spec are out of date/incorrect...
Hm, I don't see why the VM implementation should affect the
syscall API. The whole idea is to think about the right
abstractions before implementing.
Having said that, we'll re-consider this approach next time
Re spec out-of-date: Apologies for this. Things were revamped in a
big way, and there's always a risk of some doc updates being
inconsistent or forgotten. I hope you pointed them out to
us. We'll keep working on fixing things that come up.
- A queue system for marking in the consult, could write the group numbers on the whiteboard so the tutors can determine if there is anyone else for them to mark.
Thank you for this suggestion, we'll consider it next time.
- I think the project was spot on, impressive given this was the first trimester run.
The lectures were a bit full on, but I'm not sure what can be done
about that, other than warning students about it.
Thanks for this. The course is meant to be challenging ;-) I did
restructure a fair bit to adapt to the new schedule, shortening
some parts, expanding others. It seems to have worked for most lectures.
Thanks for the feedback, and your participation in the course!
16 Oct 2019.