Computer Hardware

The term computer hardware refers to the various electronic components that are required for you to use a computer along with the hardware components inside the computer case. As you know your computer equipment is made of several common components. These include:

  • The main computer box.
  • A monitor - Looks like a television screen.
  • A keyboard.
  • A mouse.
  • Speakers.
  • An optional printer

The main computer box is the main component of the computer. It has computer hardware parts inside that perform the following functions:

  • Temporary storage of information (known as data in more technical terms) - This function is done by memory.
  • Permanent storage of information - This function is done by a hard disk, floppy disk, or CD ROM.
  • Manipulation or processing of data - Used to determine where data is stored and perform calculations which support operations that the user is doing.
  • Interfacing to the outside components or to the outside world - This supports the ability for the user to communicate with the computer and know how the computer is responding to commands which are done primarily through the monitor, keyboard, and mouse along with their interface components in the main computer box.
  • A power supply which provides the electrical power to the components in the computer box.

The Main Computer Box

The main computer box is made of several computer hardware components and subcomponents which include:

There are also other minor computer hardware components inside the case which include cables which may be used to hook other internal parts together along with connecting an interface to the case for printers and other devices such as a high speed serial bus called USB. (A serial bus simply refers to the fact that data is sent in a stream which is like sending one bit at a time.

The Case

The drawing below shows a typical case. It may help you understand where your connections for your monitor, keyboard, mouse, and other devices are if you should need to hook them up. For more specific information you should refer to your computer owner's manual.

Typical Computer Views

The drawing below shows a typical layout of the components inside your computer case.

Inside the Case
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