What Is GUI (Graphical User Interface)?


GUI or Graphical User Interface is an interface provided to the user, superuser or administrator in order to interact with a system in an easy way. GUI generally consist of a single touch or click components like button, text box, slider, picture, etc.

GUI History

The GUI is developed at the end of the 1970s and before the GUI there was CLI or Command Line Interface which is geeky interface generally used by technical or professional persons. The first commercially available GUI is developed by the Xerox named as PARC.  It is released with the named Xerox 8010 Information System which is released in 1981. After that Steve Jobs saw the GUI in a tour at Xerox. This is started Apple’s GUI based operating system for the personal computer named Macintosh which is released in 1984. After this release Windows also started the GUI based operating system development where GUI based for Windows 1.0 is released 1985.

GUI Components

GUI consist of different components. Not all of the components should exist in a GUI but in most of the cases, these components are used.

  • `Window`is one of the most popular component of a GUI. Windows generally used to contains multiple components of a GUI. The window also used as an interface for different applications as different windows.
  • `Button` is generally used to trigger an action like save, edit, start, stop some actions in a GUI.
  • `Label` is a text label which is used to provide information with text.
  • `TextBox` is used to input some text information to the GUI and very popular component.
  • `Slider` is used to slide a pointer to set a specific value.
  • `Picture` is another popular component which is used to show some pictures in a GUI.
  • `Video` is a popular component of where different type of video can be shown.
  • `CheckBox` is used to provide multiple options to check single or multiple of them.
  • `Panel` is a part of the screen which provides shortcuts or list of something.
  • `Tab` provides multiple screens in a Windows which is very useful to put a lot of GUI components in a single window.
  • `Icon` is used to show some little picture
  • `Mouse` is hardware but very important for user input into a GUI
  • `Keyboard` is another hardware which provides input to the components like textbox.
  • `Menu` provides some shortcuts in a window to open them.
  • `Pointer` is used to select and interact with the GUI components by using a mouse.
  • `Desktop`is used in operating systems in order to provide the main screen to the user with different tools and GUI components like a menu, window, picture, etc.
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Advantages of GUI

Before the GUI the Command Line Interface or simple CLI was the interaction way with a system or applications. With the development and usage of the GUI, the popularity of the computer systems hiked because it provides a lot of advantages. Here some advantages of GUI.

  • GUI is more human-friendly and eye-candy.
  • GUI provides easy access to the functions of the system and applications
  • GUI can be used with very little knowledge which is helpful for novice users.
  • GUI provides visually rich output and information against CLI.

GUI Examples

Today a lot of operating systems, programs and applications has GUI. Here we will list different type of GUI’s about these.

Google Chrome GUI
Google Chrome GUI
  • Google Chrome provides classical GUI components like tab, menu, button, picture etc.
Windows Server GUI
Windows Server GUI
  • Windows Server GUI provides a Desktop experience to the users.
Windows File Explorer GUI
Windows File Explorer GUI
  • Windows File Explorer GUI provides left panel to navigate with a pane to list file and folders
7zip GUI
7zip GUI

GUI (Graphical User Interface) vs CLI(Command Line Interface)

Before the GUI there was CLI (Command Line Interface). They are very different from each other. Here will compare GUI vs CLI (Command Line Interface).

  • GUI provides Graphics where CLI provides generally a black screen with some text.
  • GUI provides human-friendly interaction where CLI is like machine interaction
  • GUI is easy to use where CLI is hard to use
  • GUI can be used by novice users where CLI requires some expert knowledge
  • GUI uses mouse clicks and some text input to input and interaction where CLI can only interact with text commands.

Linux GUI

Linux is an opensource and geeky operating system. Linux mainly started as a command line based operating system which is mainly designed for experienced users. Over time it changed a lot and integrated different GUI components and tools like Desktop Managers. Linux provides the very same experience to the Windows from a desktop point of view. Linux provides different graphical desktop environments like below.

  • KDE
  • Gnome
  • XFCE
  • LXDE
  • Unity
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Windows GUI

Windows is the most popular user-level operating system where its GUI makes it so popular. Windows provides very easy GUI experience for its users where children, elders, non-tech people can easily learn and use it. Windows mainly aimed to be used mostly with a mouse and some cases with a keyboard.

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