Personal computer sales have been growing at a pretty good clip over the last ten years. Just like televisions, you will find that the average American household has at least two computers or a computer and a computer game console. In spite of the sales of computers, there are still some people out there who want to know more about a computer to be able to understand it better and get more out of its use. Knowing a bit more about a computer can also help a computer user when they need to get help from tech support when something does not work right.
As a little introduction or a refresher to computers, we will present some basic computer tips and information. Below are 7 basic parts that make up a computer. Even though there are many add ons that make up a computer , here are the simple and basic components that a computer must have.
- CPU – Central Procession Unit
- RAM – Random Access Memory
- Hard Disk Drive – Hard Drive
The four items listed at the top of the list, are located inside of the computer housing, also known as the case. The case is the box that you would plug your monitor keyboard mouse and printer into.
The motherboard is like the engine of an automobile. It provides support for the internal components and also passes information between the computer parts. Just like an engine in a car which interacts with the spark plugs, pistons and fuel, the motherboard is the block that the other components plug into. If the motherboard is the engine, and like most modern cars today there is a brain. On a computer you could say the CPU is the brain.
CPU – Most of the mathematical manipulations that make computers operate are done by the CPU. Other components like high performance graphic cards, may also have their own processors, but their results still have to be passed through the CPU. The speed of the computer is usually measured by the speed of the CPU. Even though other factors also affect overall speed, the CPU rating is generally seen as the single most important measure of performance. For instance, 3-D computer games would run better on a computer with a higher CPU rating than a computer used mostly for office applications that have a lower CPU rating. CPU in most computers today, are usually rated between 2.0 GHz and 3.0 GHz allowing for a wider range of computer programs from computer games to movies. This measurement refer to the number of calculations the processor can make in 1 second. The higher the number, the faster (better) the computer. CPUs generate a lot of heat doing this work, so they need a heat sink and fan attached to them to keep them from overheating.
Heat is a major enemy of the computer and directly affects its life span.