Difference Between System Software and Application Software

By | May 16, 2020
System Software and Application Software

Software is just amazing, they interact with the user and give commands to the hardware so it could work according to the users need. The software we use in our day to day life are classified into two categories one is System Software and Application Software. You daily use a bunch of software most of them are Application Software because they provide the most interactive and direct user interface, though some of the system software are there which provides user interfaces most of them are not directly accessible.
Here in this article, we will differentiate between the System Software and Application Software before that let’s have a brief introduction of what is software?

What is Software?

Software is a collection of data and coded information which is used to control and give instruction to the computer, so the computer or any system can work according to the passed instructions. The computer program is termed as software.


Types of Software

There are three types of software

  • System software
  • Programming software
  • Application software

Programming software act like a System software, that’s why we do not consider them as a separate type of software. Most of the programming software fall under system software.

What is System Software?

System Software is those computer programs which provides an interface and environment to run the Application program. They basically use to convert the human-readable instruction to the machine language so the system hardware can perform the task according to the passed instructions.
A user does not have direct access to this software but there some system software which is user interactive. This software is not that much flexible and works according to the pre-instructed code, they basically control the system hardware component.

Some Examples of System Software:

  • An operating system such as Windows, Linux, MAC, DOS, etc
  • Drivers for different devices, such as printer driver, CD driver, etc.
  • Utility Programs such as in-built antivirus, BIOS, firewalls, file Explorer, etc.

What is an Application Software?

Application Software is formally known as Apps. Application Software needs a System Software to run an Application, the same Application Software can not be run in different System software. Application Softwares are used to perform specific tasks and they are limited to that task. User has direct interaction with Application Software, and the user can give instruction to that Application software using any input device. We can create Application Softwares using different high-level programming languages such as C, C++, Java, Python, etc.

Some Example Application Software:

  • All Microsoft Office application
  • Browser such as Chrome, Opera, Firefox, etc.
  • All type of Downloaded application and games.

System Software vs Application Software

Here we have provided a Brief difference between the System and Application Software.

System Software Application Software
It is used to provide an interface between the Application system and System hardware.
It performs many automatic tasks for the user such as file management, security, Memory Management, etc.
It controls a bunch of System Hardware and works in the background.
Application Software provides an End to end connection between the user and the system.
Pre-installed software and some of them cannot be uninstalled User can install and uninstall this software
Direct Interaction
User does not have direct interaction with system software User can have direct interaction with the Software
This Software can run independently on any system with some conditions. Application software needs a specific kind of system software to run.
Hardware Connectivity
The system software has a direct connection to the system hardware Application software does not directly communicate with system hardware.
User Permission
Once the system is on the System software starts running in the system background without user permission. It’s completely on User whether he wants to start an Application software or not the software application need user permission to run.
Written on
Most of the system software written on low-level language so it does not need some kind of translator to execute Application Softwares are written in High-level languages and they need programming software or System software to execute.
Operating Systems Chrome, Microsoft Office, IDE’s, etc


In our System, we use both System and Application software. As a common computer user, we do not interact with system software directly, though we use Application software a most. A system should have all need System as well as Application software for a decent performance.

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