Computer hardware is the collection of physical parts of a computer system. This includes the computer case, monitor, keyboard, and mouse. It also includes all the parts inside the computer case, such as the hard disk drive, motherboard, video card, and many others. Computer hardware is what you can physically touch.
A computer system consists of two major elements: hardware and software. Computer hardware is the collection of all the parts you can physically touch. Computer software, on the other hand, is not something you can touch. Software is a set of instructions for a computer to perform specific operations. You need both hardware and software for a computer system to work.
Some hardware components are easy to recognize, such as the computer case, keyboard, and monitor. However, there are many different types of hardware components. In this lesson, you will learn how to recognize the different components and what they do.
Types of hardware
Types of hardware include the following:
- Motherboard: The motherboard is the computer’s central communications backbone connectivity point through which all components and external peripherals connect. The motherboard is the main printed circuit board in a computer. Also called the mainboard, the motherboard holds important components, including the CPU, RAM, power supply, graphics card and sound card.
- CPU: The CPU is responsible for processing most of the computer’s data, turning input into output.
- RAM: The hardware in a computer where the OS, application programs and data that are being used are kept so the device’s processor can quickly reach them. As the main memory of a computer, RAM is much faster to read from and write to than other types of storage, including a hard disk drive HDD, solid-state drive SSD and optical drive. RAM is volatile, meaning that data remains in RAM if the computer is on, but it’s lost when the computer is turned off. The OS and other files are reloaded into RAM, usually from an SSD or HDD, when the computer is rebooted.
- Display screen: A display screen may be an external monitor, or it may be built into the computer. A touchscreen display is sensitive to pressure. As such, a user interacts with the device by touching pictures or words on the screen.
- HDD: A nonvolatile memory NVM hardware device, an HDD stores OS files, application problems, media and other documents. The HDD can store data permanently even in the event of a power failure.
- SSD: A type of nonvolatile storage device that stores persistent data on solid-state FLASH MEMORY. An SSD consists of a flash controller and NAND FLASH MEMORY Unlike an HDD, an SSD doesn’t have any moving parts. SSDs use flash-based memory, which is significantly faster than traditional mechanical hard disks. Since they’re nonmechanical, SSDs use less power, which means longer battery life when they’re built into laptop computers.
- Graphics card: Responsible for rendering graphics in a computer and projecting information onto a screen, a graphics card aims to remove the processing strain from the processor or RAM.
- Removable drives: Any type of storage device that can be removed from a computer while the system is running, including USB cards and OPTICAL DISKS, such as compact discs (CDs), Blu-ray discs and digital versatile discs (DVDs).
- Power supply: The power supply converts the power from the outlet into usable power for the other components inside the computer. Typically, more power is needed to run more complex systems. For example, a desktop computer with a high-end motherboard, a custom liquid cooling loop and dual GPUs will need a higher wattage computer power supply than a system that is not so complex.
IMPORTANCE OF COMPUTER HARDWARE MAINTENANCE
Keeping computers well-maintained can keep both viruses and malware away and keep your computer running in tip-top shape. Regular maintenance can also help you ensure your antivirus software is up-to-date and working properly. Nothing can be more frustrating than a computer that processes too slowly
The Following Are The Importance Of Computer Hardware Maintenance
Prevent Data Loss
Although data loss is uncommon, if it does happen, it can wreak havoc on your life. When your computer starts running slowly or begins having occasional hiccups, it can require a system reboot that can ultimately result in lost data. However, keeping your computer maintained will lessen the likelihood of these instances and keep your data safe and secure for when you need to access it.
Maximize your Software Efficiency
Another reason your computer may slow down over time is that your software package is getting old. Since this change happens gradually, your computer simply gets used to it and thinks that it is normal. But, having regularly scheduled maintenance on your computer will clean out any issues and have your software running perfectly again.
Speed up Your Computer
Nothing can be more frustrating than a computer that processes too slowly. But, as most of us can attest, over time our computers get clogged up with files and everything gets disorganized and fragmented. The result is slow processing times. Computer maintenance techs are experts at running speed and optimization checks that can pinpoint issues and keep your computer running at an optimal speed.
Prevention Against Viruses and Malware
It seems like no matter how often we sweep our computers or run virus checks on them, our computers are still vulnerable to harmful viruses. There are innumerable viruses and malware already out there just waiting to infect computers, and more are being created every day. Some are meant to be a daily annoyance and slow down the processing time of the computer or make pop-up messages appear, but others can infect entire operating systems. When this occurs either at home or a business, it can be costly to fix and can even cost a company money in other ways such as loss of productivity. But, keeping computers well-maintained can keep both viruses and malware away and keep your computer running in tip-top shape. Regular maintenance can also help you ensure your antivirus software is up-to-date and working properly.
Early Detection of Issues
Computers can be temperamental, and we all know that small issues can become huge problems before we know it. But, having regular maintenance check done on your computer can eradicate small issues before they become big problems. Small issues can crop up at any time, even when your computer is new, nipping them in the bud during a regular maintenance session can save you a lot of headaches when the computer starts to age.
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