How Computer Hardware & Components Function

How computer hardware
& components function

In a computer there is a lot of hardware and components that exist so that a computer can function properly. Without the hardware and components the computer wouldn’t work. The major hardware components of a computer are the CPU, which is known as the central processing unit, the main memory/immediate access storage and input and output devices. In this article I will be explaining the different types of hardware and components inside a computer and how they function.
Your PC (Personal Computer) is a system, consisting of many components. Some of those components, like Windows XP, and all your other programs, are software. The stuff you can actually see and touch.

Not everybody has exactly the same hardware. But those of you, who have a desktop system, like the example shown in Figure 1, probably have most of the components shown in that same figure. Those of you with notebook computers probably have most of the same components. Only in your case the components are all integrated into a single book sized portable unit.

CPU – The Central Processing Unit
The central processing unit (CPU) is the brain of a computer system. It carries out the instructions of a computer program, to perform the basic step by step instructions, logical, and input/output operations of the system. The central processing unit is made up of the Control Unit (CU) and the Arithmetic and Logic Unit (ALU). The control unit is a part of the central processing unit that instructs other parts of the computer system to carry out the instructions they get given. The arithmetic and logic unit is a digital circuit that performs arithmetic and logical operations.

Main Memory

The main memory is a form of immediate access storage also known as primary storage; it is consistent memory directly accessible to the central processing unit and is used to store data actively so that it can be used constantly. The central processing unit reads instructions stored there and used them as required for the instruction being set to work. Information stored in the main memory is lost when the computer is powered off.

Secondary Storage
Secondary storage differs from primary storage in that it is not directly accessible by the central processing unit. The computer usually uses its input and output channels to access secondary storage and transfers the chosen data using the specific area in the primary storage. Secondary storage does not lose the data when the device is powered off and it isn’t changed either. Secondary Storage devices include the hard drive, flash drive, memory card.

Input Devices
An input device is any piece of computer hardware equipment used to provide data to the computer. Input Devices Include the Mouse, Keyboard, Touch Screen Monitor, Scanner, Track Pad, Microphone, Joystick, and Web Camera. The input devices help the person using the computer doesn’t allow you to do, without the certain equipment.

Output devices

An output device is any piece of computer hardware equipment used to communicate the results of data processing carried out by the computer to the rest of the world. Output Devices include the Speaker, Printer, Monitor, and Plotter. The output devices are needed to be downloaded onto the computer, so that the person using the computer can complete different things that they need to do, for example, printing of a document. The person would need to connect the printer to the computer, for the document to be printed out.


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