In computing, a shell is a computer program which exposes an operating system's services to a human user or other program. In general, operating system shells use either a command-line interface (CLI) or graphical user interface (GUI), depending on a computer's role and particular operation. It is named a shell because it is the outermost layer around the operating system. Command-line shells require the user to be familiar with commands and their calling syntax, and to understand concepts about the shell-specific scripting language (for example, bash). Graphical shells place a low burden on beginning computer users, and are characterized as being easy to use. Since they also come with certain disadvantages, most GUI-enabled operating systems also provide CLI shells.
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