Computers are extremely efficient and intelligent. Just as humans require specific components to function and survive, a computer also requires specific capabilities. Once the computers are connected to electrical power, it can function. However, the computer is futile without its basic working parts.
It’s not just IT experts that should be knowledgeable on a computer’s essential parts! This key knowledge will benefit you for years to come. Check out the five essential computer components below.
A computer is nothing without its motherboard! The motherboard is a crucial computer mechanism because it is what every other internal part of the machine connects back to. The motherboard is a circuit board with the purpose to allow communication between other components in the computer. The motherboard has ports that face the outside of the PC’s case to allow you to charge the computer, plug a monitor in or even connect a mouse.
2. Central Processing Unit (CPU)
The central processing unit directs everything that occurs inside a computer and when these actions occur. The CPU applies to the control unit itself and the arithmetic logic unit (ALU). The control unit receives program instructions from the machine’s memory, deciphers the instructions and executes them accordingly. The ALU ultimately makes the decisions and sorts everything out mathematically. CPUs are silicon chips that contain millions of transistors. Depending on the computer, some may have several chips.
3. Random Access Memory (RAM)
Random-access memory is the main storage component for the computer. The CPU communicates directly with the RAM via a bus that connects every computer component electronically. RAM is extremely efficient, operating in a billionth of a second. It is made up of thousands, even millions, of transistors on each silicon chip.
4. Secondary Storage/Hard Disk Drive
Disk storage is a secondary form of storage that is far more predictable than the RAM. Disks are round silver plates with an oxide coating that maintains a magnetic charge. The power charge for a certain spot on the disk can be either off or on, which supports the 1s and 0s computer language. A solid hard disk us another form of secondary storage that is made up of non-volatile silicon chips that mimic disk storage.
Software is an absolutely essential part of a computer. It is stored onto read-only memory chips and the computer then deciphers the instructions and determines which action to take next. The operating software system is often loaded onto the secondary software/hard disk drive and is loaded on as the final part of the software startup.
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