DADDY BOB'S COMPUTER Q & A
In A Computer
strange as it may seem, many people
do not really know what the various parts of
a computer system are called and what they
do. Often when people bring their computers
to me for repairs, they ask what they should
bring, and I get it called everything from
the tower, hard drive, modem, and others. So
maybe it is time these things were
answer your question, the consensus of just
what the computer is. The computer is the
box that everything else plugs into. Here is
a picture with the major external components
into a little more details, here is a
picture of the computer internals.
go a little deeper into the computer, one of
the main components is the motherboard. The
motherboard is the thing that all the
components are mounted on or plug into. Here
is a typical motherboard with its components
and connections labeled.
Firewire (IEEE 1394B)
supports 800Mb/s for high speed transfers to
external video cameras and external disk
supports accessory cards such as wireless
adapters and TV-tuners. (This board has 2)
supports the latest graphics cards. Many
motherboards have 2 or more PCIe x16 slots
to support running two graphics cards
simultaneously. The current technology in
upgrade component is PCI Express (PCIe).
With PCIe, data flows much faster to
Most motherboards have
integrated sound audio.
This is where the brains of the computer,
the CPU, Central Processing Unit plugs in.
radiate heat to the motherboard. It is
important to have a motherboard with many
fan headers to allow more system fans. 2 pin
headers provide simple power, while 3 pin
headers provide power as well as bios
controlled speed and smart control.
DDR2 or DDR3
Most motherboards support
dual-channel architecture, either DDR, DDR2
or DDR3. By installing memory modules into
matching banks, it is possible to double the
speed that date moves from RAM to the CPU.
This is where ATX power is
connected to the power supply with 20+4
SATA has many advantages
including slim, flexible cables and a
simplistic serial link. All current
motherboards have SATA to support the latest
hard drives as well as optical drives. (This
motherboard has 4)
The total number of USB ports
on a computer can only be accessed using the
internal USB headers. Every internal USB
header can support two additional full speed
This is where ATA100/133 hard
drives and CD and DVD optical drives connect
if they are the EIDE type.
expansion slots where various cards plug in.
These may include modems, network cards and
others that add features to the computer.
The Accelerated Graphics Port is a
high-speed point-to-point channel for
attaching a graphics card primarily to
assist in the acceleration of 3D computer
graphics. Since 2004, AGP is being phased
out in favor of PCI Express (PCIe).
Integrated Audio Chip:
The computer's sound system is often
integrated into the motherboard. When this
is done, the components for it are on the
Integrated Video Chip:
The video system can also be integrated into
the motherboard. This is usually the case on
most computers that are not specifically
designed for games and other intensive video
battery is used to maintain the memory of
the CMOS chip which contains things like the
time, date, type of hardware and other
settings specific to this computer.
mention one more thing here. Here's how to
tell if the components like the sound,
video, Ethernet, etc. are integrated into
the motherboard or on separate cards in the
peripheral device plugs into what is labeled
the I/O panel in this picture, it is
integrated. If it plugs into what is labeled
as Expansion Slots, it is not integrated but
on its own card. There may be duplications
in the I/O panel and expansion slots but if
there are, the one in the expansion slot
usually takes precedence.