Everything on the system that can be worked with is considered an object. Objects provide a common interface for working with system components. This topic discusses the different kinds of objects and how to work with them.

One of the differences between the IBM® i operating system and other operating systems is the concept of objects. Anything that you can change in the operating system is a type of object. For example, data files, programs, libraries, queues, user profiles, and device descriptions are all types of objects. By treating everything as an object, the operating system can provide all of these items with an interface that defines what actions users can perform, and how the operating system needs to treat the encapsulated data. Additionally, this interface allows for standardized commands across different system elements; the commands for working with user profiles and data files are similar.

One important type of object is the library. Libraries are essentially containers, or organizational structures for other objects, and you can use libraries to reference other objects on your system. Libraries can contain many objects, and can be associated with a specific user profile or application. The only library that can contain other libraries is called QSYS. It contains all other libraries on the system.

There are many different types of objects in the operating system. Finding objects and performing actions on them are basic functions of system operations.