… but what parts does ithave and how do theywork?A computer looks like this...
Expanded view of a PC (PersonalComputer):1. Monitor2. Mother board3. Processor4. IDE ports5. Principal memory (RAM,random access memory)6. Expansion boards7. Power supply8. Optic storage decive (DVD)9. Hard disk / hard drive10. Keyboard11. MouseA first approach to computers hardware
A first approach to how it worksEverytime that there is an input of information, the computer stores it in theRAM (memory), then the processor or CPU interprets the informationand then outputs the information.For instance, when someone clicks on the Save icon in a word processor program (like Wordor Writer):1. The information is saved in the memory (the information stored would be something like“someone clicked on the save icon with the mouse”, but expressed with 0 and 1s).2. The processor/CPU interprets that in this program that information means “to save to thehard drive the document that the user is working with, which is in the memory/RAM)”.3. The processor/CPU orders the memory/RAM to release the document.4. The processor/CPU orders the hard disk to store the document that has been released bythe memory/RAM.
CPUChipsetMain memoryInput devices- mouse- keyboardOutput devices- monitor- printerPermanent storagedevices- hard drive- DVD- Pen driveTo understand a little better how it works1.- The information is transmitted between the different parts in the computer through some special typesof wires that are called buses. The information is first coded in bits (1’s and 0’s), that are transmittedusing electrical pulses (for instance, a 0 could be equivalent to have 0 volts during a period of time and a 1 equivalent tohave 5 volts during that period)2.- Peripherals andpermanent storagedevices put informationin and out of thecomputer3.- The chipset controls the peripherals: itdetects when information enters the computer,decides which of the peripherals can put aninformation in the buses each time, etc.4.- The main memory (orRAM or memory) stores:a.- the program that is beingusedb.- the document that isbeing usedc.- the information thatcomes from or goes to theperipheralsIt is temporary, so itscontent is lost every time weturn the computer off5.- The processor (orCPU):a.- interprets theinstructionsb.- does the operationsc.- sends the appropriateorders to the rest of theelements in the computer.
Mother board 2.93 Ghz Celeron D340 (year 2000 aprox):The internal components areinserted in slots and sockets.Peripherals are connected to theports.1. Socket for the CPU2. Slots for the main memory/RAM3. IDE connectors for somestorage devices (hard drive,DVD…)4. AGP slot for graphics card5. PCI slot for some expansioncards: network, sound…6. Ports for some externalperipherals such as the monitorand the printer…7. USB ports for some externalperipherals and storage devicessuch as the mouse, pen drive,printer…In the mother board all the components are interconnected
The battery is used tokeep time and date in thecomputerPorts can be serial (it is transmitted one bitafter the other) or parallel (various bits aretransmitted simultaneously). The mostpopular port these days is the USB(Universal Serial Bus)The BIOS stores permanentlythe most important informationso the computer can startworking. Everytime the computeris turned on, the processor goesto the BIOS to know thehardware that is connected andwhere to find the operatingsystem (where in the hard drive),so it can be sent to the mainmemory.In the mother board all the components are interconnected
Locate the most important elements and explain what they are for1. CPU socket2. Slots for the main memory/RAM3. IDE connectors4. AGP slot5. PCI slots6. Ports for some externalperipherals such themonitor and the printer…7. USB ports8. BIOS9. Battery10. Chipset11. Power connector
Make sure you are able to:• Explain how a computer works• Recognize and locate the most important elements in the previous motherboard pictures• Explain what each of the elements in a PC are used for (buses, peripherals, storage devices,main memory, processor, chipset, ports, slots, sockets, PCI and AGP cards, IDE ports, BIOS)Extra activities:1. Google “motherboard” to see more pictures of different models of mother boards and try to locatethe most important elements.CPU socket.2. Visit http://en.kioskea.net/contents/377-motherboard to solve any doubt about thehardware connected to the motherboard