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A monolithic kernel is an operating system architecture where the entire operating system is working in kernel space and is alone in supervisor mode. The monolithic model differs from other operating system architectures in that it alone defines a high-level virtual interface over computer hardware. A set of primitives or system calls implement all operating system services such as process management, concurrency, and memory management. Device drivers can be added to the kernel as modules.

A monolithic kernel is an operating system architecture where the entire operating system is working in kernel space and is alone in supervisor mode. The monolithic model differs from other operating system architectures (such as the microkernel architecture) in that it alone defines a high-level virtual interface over computer hardware. A set of primitives or system calls implement all operating system services such as process management, concurrency, and memory management. Device drivers can be added to the kernel as modules.

Structure of monolithic kernel, microkernel and hybrid kernel-based operating systems