Computer Class Notes 1

Hardware refers to the external and internal devices and equipment that enable you to perform major functions such as input, output, storage, communication, processing, and more.

RAM (Random Access Memory) is the hardware in a computing device where the operating system (OS), application programs and data in current use are kept so they can be quickly reached by the device’s processor. RAM is the main memory in a computer. It is much faster to read from and write to than other kind of storage such as a hard disk drive (HDD), solid-state drive or optical drive. If RAM fills up, the computer’s processor must repeatedly go to the hard disk to

overlay the old data in RAM with new data. This process slows the computer’s operation. RAM is used in computers to temporarily store files in use on the computer. ROM chips often have a storage capacity of 4 to 8 MB. RAM chips often range in storage capacity from 1 to 256 GB. ROM can vary in size from less than an inch in length to multiple inches in length and width, depending on their use.

 A processor (CPU) is the logic circuitry that responds to and processes the basic instructions that drive a computer. The CPU is seen as the main and most crucial integrated circuitry (IC) chip in a computer, as it is responsible for interpreting most of computers commands.

Types of Processor

The processor, also known as the CPU, provides the instructions and processing power the computer needs to do its work. The more powerful and updated your processor, the faster your computer can complete its tasks. By getting a more powerful processor, you can help your computer think and work faster. A central processing unit (CPU) also called a central processor or main processor, it is the most important processor in a given computer. Its circuitry executes instructions of a computer program, such as arithmetic, logic, controlling, and input/output (I/O) operations. This role contrasts with that of external components, such as main memory and I/O circuitry,and specialized coprocessors such as graphics processing units (GPUs).

A processor is the most important integrated circuitry (IC) in computer. It is used for interpreting most computer commands. It is an electrical component that performs operation on external data sources such as memory and data stream. Typically taking the form of microprocessors, it can be implemented on integrated circuit chips.


Motherboard is the main printed circuit board (PCB) in general-purpose computers and other expandable systems. It holds and allows communication between many of the crucial electronic components of a system, such as the central processing unit (CPU) and memory, and provides connectors for other peripherals. Unlike a backplane, a motherboard usually contains significant sub-systems, such as the central processor.

As the name suggests, this board is often referred to as the “mother” of all components attached to it, which often include peripherals, interface cards,etc.

It distributes electricity and facilitates communication between and to the central processing unit (CPU), random access memory (RAM), and any other component of the computer’s hardware.

A motherboard is an electronic circuit board in a computer which interconnects hardware devices attached to it which is to say, all of the system hardware. At a minimum it includes one or more Central Processing Units (CPU), and the main processing activity of the computer takes place on it.

Hard Disk Drive

Hard disk, also called hard disk drive or hard drive, magnetic storage medium for a computer. Hard disks are flat circular plates made of aluminum or glass and coated with a magnetic material. Hard disks for personal computers can store of information.

They are called “hard drives” because the platters inside them are made of rigid (hard) plates of metal. 

A computer’s hard drive is a device consisting of several hard disks, read/write heads, a drive motor to spin the disks, and a small amount of circuitry, all sealed in a metal case to protect the disks from dust. In addition to referring to the disks themselves, the term hard disk is also used to refer to the whole of a computer’s internal data storage. 

Hard Disk Drive is alsoknown as HDD.

Solid State Drive

A solid-state drive is a solid-state storage device that uses integrated circuit assemblies to store data persistently, typically using flash memory, and functioning as secondary storage in the hierarchy of computer storage. SSD technology is known as ‘flash memory’ and this is the smallest form of data storage. Examples include memory sticks, memory cards etc. They store data as 1’s and 0’s within millions of electrical transistors instead of on films of magnetic substance or as dots on discs. Animation showing how flash memory works. Solid state devices include USB pen drives, SD cards, micro SD cards, newer types of hard drive, the SIM card that goes in your mobile phone and smart cards such as chip and pin credit and debit cards. Solid state devices store data in binary patterns using billions of tiny low-voltage switches called transistors.

  • Durability: An SSD used only for reads does not require the same level of endurance as an SSD intended to handle mostly writes.
  • Form factor: This determines if a replacement SSD works with existing storage and the number of SSDs that can fit in a single chassis.
  • Interface: This determines maximum throughput and minimum latency thresholds, as well as the expansion capabilities of the SSD. Manufacturers qualify their SSDs for NVMe, SAS and SATA.
  • Power usage: The drive interface also specifies the maximum power of an SSD, although many enterprise SSDs are engineered to be tuned while in operation.

Graphics Card

The graphics card, also called Graphics Processing Unit (GPU), is responsible for calculating images in a computer, which can then be displayed on a monitor. The graphics card can either be installed on the motherboard of the computer, or connected as an external component. The computer’s processor calculates what data a certain program wants to display on the screen and outputs it as so-called image data. This, mostly numerical, data is then converted by the GPU so that it can be displayed on a monitor or other device.There are two types of graphics cards: integrated and dedicated.

 Once a dedicated graphics card is installed, the integrated card will no longer function until the dedicated card is removed.

Computer Connection

A connection is a link between a plug or connector into a port or jack. For example, your monitor, mouse, and keyboard must connect to the computer before they work. Different forms of the word connect. Examples of computer connections. Connections on the back of the computer.

Connections on the back of a computer may be color-coded to help locate the appropriate port for a peripheral device. The list below includes many ports and their associated colors.


A SMPS (switched-mode power supply) is an electronic power supply that incorporates a switching regulator to convert electrical power efficiently.

SMPS power supply transfers power from a source usually an AC outlet to a DC device. What sets the SMPS apart is its ability to regulate the output voltage. It can increase or decrease the output voltage to maintain a constant output regardless of changes in load.

Switched-mode power supplies are classified according to the type of input and output voltages. The four major categories are:

  • AC to DC
  • DC to DC
  • DC to AC
  • AC to AC

DVD Writers

Digital Versatile Disc

The DVD Writer is a multipurpose rewriteable drive that can read audio, data, and video files and can record, or write DVD formats.

This DVD Writer drive enables you to: Create custom audio, data, and video files that can be recorded onto DVDs.

This DVD Writer/CD Writer drive enables you to:

  • Create custom audio, data, and video files thatcan be recorded onto DVDs.
  • Store large amounts of data.
  • Record directly to a DVD from a video source such as a digital video camera or a VCR.
  • Store, edit, and preserve video files fromvarious video sources.