Components of a Computer System
Components of a Computer System A computer is a system of many parts working together. The physical parts, which you can see and touch, are collectively called hardware. (Software, on the other hand, refers to the instructions, or programs, that tell the hardware what to do.) The illustration
below shows the most common hardware in a desktop computer system. Your system may look a little different, but it probably has most of these parts. A laptop computer has similar parts but combines them into a single notebooksized package.
System unit The system unit is the core of a computer system. Usually it’s a rectangular box placed on or underneath your desk. Inside this box are many electronic components that process information. The most important of these components is the central processing unit (CPU), or microprocessor, which acts as the “brain” of your computer. Another component is random access memory (RAM), which temporarily stores information that the CPU uses while the computer is on. The information stored in RAM is erased when the computer is turned off. Almost every other part of your computer connects to the system unit using cables. The cables plug into specific ports(openings), typically on the back of
the system unit. Hardware that is not part of the system unit is sometimes called a peripheral device or device. System unit Storage and Computer Memory Computer memory is of two types namely, primary and secondary.
Primary memory :– Alternatively referred to as internal memory, main memory, and primary memory, primary storage is a storage location that holds memory for short periods of times while the computer running.
Secondary Memory :- Secondary memory refers to storage devices, such as hard drives and solid state drives. It may also refer to removable storage media, such as USB flash drives,CDs, and DVDs.
Storage Devices Your computer has one or more disk drives—devices that store information on a metal or plastic disk. The disk preserves the information even when your computer is turned off.
Mouse: A mouse is a small device used to point to and select items on your computer screen.
Keyboard: A keyboard is used mainly for typing text into your computer.
Monitor: A monitor displays information in visual form, using text and graphics. The portion of the monitor that displays the information is called the screen. Like a television screen, a computer screen can show still or moving pictures.