Computer Hardware Components And Their Functions Pdf

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PC hardware, such as a desktop computer, is the most common type of IT hardware purchased by a small business. The cost of hardware depends on its specification , which in turn is determined by some key components.

My company has been approached by the producers of the TV programme The Gadget Show to write a blog or website to help their viewers understand the different elements of a computer system. Network and graphic cards. The processor is also known as the CPU which stands for Central Processing Unit and the Heart of the computer system which controls everything.

Learning Objectives

If you are not required to use this edition for a course, you may want to check it out. As we learned in the first chapter, an information system is made up of five components: hardware, software, data, people, and process. The physical parts of computing devices — those that you can actually touch — are referred to as hardware. As stated above, computer hardware encompasses digital devices that you can physically touch. This includes devices such as the following:. The on state is represented by the presence of an electronic signal; the off state is represented by the absence of an electronic signal.

Each one or zero is referred to as a bit a contraction of binary digit ; a group of eight bits is a byte. The first personal computers could process 8 bits of data at once; modern PCs can now process 64 bits of data at a time, which is where the term bit processor comes from. As you know, the system of numbering we are most familiar with is base-ten numbering. Computers use the base-two numbering system, also known as binary. In base ten, this evaluates to As the capacities of digital devices grew, new terms were developed to identify the capacities of processors, memory, and disk storage space.

Prefixes were applied to the word byte to represent different orders of magnitude. Since these are digital specifications, the prefixes were originally meant to represent multiples of which is 2 10 , but have more recently been rounded to mean multiples of It also turns out that almost every digital device uses the same set of components, so examining the personal computer will give us insight into the structure of a variety of digital devices.

As stated above, most computing devices have a similar architecture. The core of this architecture is the central processing unit, or CPU. The CPU carries out the commands sent to it by the software and returns results to be acted upon. The earliest CPUs were large circuit boards with limited functionality. Today, a CPU is generally on one chip and can perform a large variety of functions.

A hertz is defined as one cycle per second. Using the binary prefixes mentioned above, we can see that a kilohertz abbreviated kHz is one thousand cycles per second, a megahertz mHz is one million cycles per second, and a gigahertz gHz is one billion cycles per second. Besides a faster clock time, many CPU chips now contain multiple processors per chip. These chips, known as dual-core two processors or quad-core four processors , increase the processing power of a computer by providing the capability of multiple CPUs.

We all know that computers get faster every year. Gordon Moore, one of the founders of Intel, recognized this phenomenon in , noting that microprocessor transistor counts had been doubling every year. This has been generalized into the concept that computing power will double every two years for the same price point. Another way of looking at this is to think that the price for the same computing power will be cut in half every two years. But engineers will continue to seek ways to increase performance.

The motherboard is the main circuit board on the computer. The CPU, memory, and storage components, among other things, all connect into the motherboard. Motherboards come in different shapes and sizes, depending upon how compact or expandable the computer is designed to be. Most modern motherboards have many integrated components, such as video and sound processing, which used to require separate components.

When a computer starts up, it begins to load information from the hard disk into its working memory. Any program that you are running on the computer is loaded into RAM for processing. In order for a computer to work effectively, some minimal amount of RAM must be installed. In most cases, adding more RAM will allow the computer to run faster. The type of DIMM accepted into a computer is dependent upon the motherboard. While the RAM is used as working memory, the computer also needs a place to store data for the longer term.

A hard disk is where data is stored when the computer is turned off and where it is retrieved from when the computer is turned on. Why is it called a hard disk? A hard disk consists of a stack of disks inside a hard metal case. A relatively new component becoming more common in some personal computers is the solid-state drive SSD. The SSD performs the same function as a hard disk: long-term storage.

Instead of spinning disks, the SSD uses flash memory, which is much faster. Solid-state drives are currently quite a bit more expensive than hard disks. However, the use of flash memory instead of disks makes them much lighter and faster than hard disks. SSDs are primarily utilized in portable computers, making them lighter and more efficient. Some computers combine the two storage technologies, using the SSD for the most accessed data such as the operating system while using the hard disk for data that is accessed less frequently.

Besides fixed storage components, removable storage media are also used in most personal computers. Removable media allows you to take your data with you. And just as with all other digital technologies, these media have gotten smaller and more powerful as the years have gone by.

Early computers used floppy disks, which could be inserted into a disk drive in the computer. Data was stored on a magnetic disk inside an enclosure. Around the turn of the century, a new portable storage technology was being developed: the USB flash drive more about the USB port later in the chapter. This device attaches to the universal serial bus USB connector, which became standard on all personal computers beginning in the late s.

As with all other storage media, flash drive storage capacity has skyrocketed over the years, from initial capacities of eight megabytes to current capacities of 64 gigabytes and still growing.

When personal computers were first developed, they were stand-alone units, which meant that data was brought into the computer or removed from the computer via removable media, such as the floppy disk. Beginning in the mids, however, organizations began to see the value in connecting computers together via a digital network. Because of this, personal computers needed the ability to connect to these networks. Initially, this was done by adding an expansion card to the computer that enabled the network connection, but by the mids, a network port was standard on most personal computers.

As wireless technologies began to dominate in the early s, many personal computers also began including wireless networking capabilities. Digital communication technologies will be discussed further in chapter 5. In order for a personal computer to be useful, it must have channels for receiving input from the user and channels for delivering output to the user. These input and output devices connect to the computer via various connection ports, which generally are part of the motherboard and are accessible outside the computer case.

In early personal computers, specific ports were designed for each type of output device. The configuration of these ports has evolved over the years, becoming more and more standardized over time. Today, almost all devices plug into a computer through the use of a USB port. This port type, first introduced in , has increased in its capabilities, both in its data transfer rate and power supplied. Besides USB, some input and output devices connect to the computer via a wireless-technology standard called Bluetooth.

Bluetooth was first invented in the s and exchanges data over short distances using radio waves. Bluetooth generally has a range of to feet. For devices to communicate via Bluetooth, both the personal computer and the connecting device must have a Bluetooth communication chip installed.

All personal computers need components that allow the user to input data. Early computers used simply a keyboard to allow the user to enter data or select an item from a menu to run a program. With the advent of the graphical user interface, the mouse became a standard component of a computer.

These two components are still the primary input devices to a personal computer, though variations of each have been introduced with varying levels of success over the years. For example, many new devices now use a touch screen as the primary way of entering data. Besides the keyboard and mouse, additional input devices are becoming more common. Scanners allow users to input documents into a computer, either as images or as text. Microphones can be used to record audio or give voice commands.

Webcams and other types of video cameras can be used to record video or participate in a video chat session. Output devices are essential as well. The most obvious output device is a display, visually representing the state of the computer. In some cases, a personal computer can support multiple displays or be connected to larger-format displays such as a projector or large-screen television.

Besides displays, other output devices include speakers for audio output and printers for printed output. In most cases, these items can be replaced with newer, faster components. The table below shows how each of these contributes to the speed of a computer. Besides upgrading hardware, there are many changes that can be made to the software of a computer to make it faster. A personal computer is designed to be a general-purpose device.

That is, it can be used to solve many different types of problems. As the technologies of the personal computer have become more commonplace, many of the components have been integrated into other devices that previously were purely mechanical.

We have also seen an evolution in what defines a computer. Ever since the invention of the personal computer, users have clamored for a way to carry them around. Here we will examine several types of devices that represent the latest trends in personal computing. In , Compaq Computer Corporation developed the first commercially successful portable personal computer. But this was no laptop; the computer was designed like a suitcase, to be lugged around and laid on its side to be used.

Besides portability, the Compaq was successful because it was fully compatible with the software being run by the IBM PC, which was the standard for business. In the years that followed, portable computing continued to improve, giving us laptop and notebook computers.

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Not a MyNAP member yet? Register for a free account to start saving and receiving special member only perks. Endorsing Dr. And whereas the Roadmap started out in a paper version that was revised every two years, it is now in elec-. Spencer remarked that the Roadmap is not an inexpensive endeavor. He then promised the audience that the following two presentations, on microprocessors and magnetic storage, would go to the heart of computer performance.

INTRODUCTION TO COMPUTER HARDWARE

If you are not required to use this edition for a course, you may want to check it out. As we learned in the first chapter, an information system is made up of five components: hardware, software, data, people, and process. The physical parts of computing devices — those that you can actually touch — are referred to as hardware. As stated above, computer hardware encompasses digital devices that you can physically touch.

Parts of the Computer & Their Uses

Hardware refers to the physical, tangible computer equipment and devices, which provide support for major functions such as input, processing internal storage, computation and control , output, secondary storage for data and programs , and communication. A computer system is a set of integrated devices that input, output, process, and store data and information.

4 Response
  1. Romaine B.

    Computer Hardware – Hardware Components & Internal PC Connections: Cases can come in many different sizes (known as form factors). .com/content/​dam/www/public/us/en/documents/product-briefs/zzexpress-chipset-brief.​pdf.

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