1.2 - Computer Components​

The General Reference
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A computer consists of multiple pieces of hardware which allows it to complete tasks.​

  • The processor or CPU controls the functions of the computer and processes inputs
  • The motherboard is the main circuit board of a computer system. It connects other components in a computer system and can link other devices via ports.
  • The power supply provides the computer system with energy by converting electricity into current which can power the computer.
  • RAM or random-access memory stores the currently running processes on the computer. It is volatile meaning it is cleared after the computer restarts​
  • ROM or read-only memory is permanent storage and stores necessary programs within a computer system such as the BIOS. It is non-volatile storage
  • Cache is temporary storage that holds frequently accessed data for fast retrieval. It is volatile storage.
    • SCSI or Small Computer System Interface is a protocol that regulates the connection of peripherals.​ ​
    • SAS is a second iteration of SCSI that supports a larger number of devices.​
Expansion cards can be connected to the motherboard. These allow for tasks to be completed more effectively:​
  • Graphics card: Converts visual data onto an output device​
  • Sound card: Converts analogue sound inputs into digital data that can be stored and converts digital data into analogue data into digital sound files that can be played​
  • Fibre Channel Card: Allows for fast transfer of data between storage servers​
USB: Can connect storage and input devices to a computer. It supports data transfers and can provide power to devices​ 
Firewire: Allows apple computers to transfer data from external devices, similar to USB​ 
SD Port: Allows data transfer to computers from SD card devices​
Ethernet Port: Connects networking devices to provide internet access​
SATA Port: Transfers data from various storage drives

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