Each and every notebook or desktop or server is run by an Operating System - the low-level software which communicates with the hardware, including peripherals such as a mouse or a printer, together with any applications that are installed on your system. Any program input through a command line or a Graphical User Interface (GUI) is processed by sending an Application Program Interface (API) request to the Operating System. On a server, every single application runs within the parameters established by the OS as well - priority, physical memory, processing time, and so on. This is valid for both standard website scripts and server-side software such as a media server. When a virtual server is set up on a physical one, there can be two separate Operating Systems, referred to as guest OS and host OS, so that you will be able to set up a different software environment on a single machine.