CSE 451 is an undergraduate course on operating systems. During the course you will complete several labs, working in teams of two. Each lab will add a new feature to a primitive operating system called xk. At the end of this class you will be able to find your way around the source code of most operating systems, and more generally, be comfortable with systems software.



There will be an online midterm, most likely on Nov 9th during class time. There will be an online final, most likely Wednedsay Dec 16th via Canvas. I will be online during both to answer exam questions.


Roughly 50% projects, 15% midterm, 30% final, and 5% intangibles.



You will be given reading assignments associated with lecture and section. You should finish the reading before coming to class - we'll assume you've done this reading, and the lectures will enhance the material, rather than regurgitating it.

Late days

Each team gets 4 late days.

Cheating vs. collaboration

Collaboration is a very good thing. On the other hand, cheating is considered a very serious offense and is vigorously prosecuted. Vigorous prosecution requires that you be advised of the cheating policy of the course before the offending act.

For this quarter, the policy is simple: don’t cheat. You know it when you’re doing it. We’ll recognize it when you do it. For example:

  • Never share code or text on the project.
  • Never use someone else’s code or text in your solutions.
  • Never consult project code or text that might be on the Internet.

On the other hand, for this class, you are strongly encouraged to:

  • Share ideas.
  • Explain your code to someone to see if they know why it doesn’t work.
  • Help someone else debug if they’ve run into a wall.

If you obtain help of any kind, always write the name(s) of your sources.

Please read CSE’s Academic Misconduct Policy.

Disability Accomodations

University of Washington Page

Religious Accomodations

University of Washington Policy