- The motherboard is the main circuit board of a computer.
- EVERYTHING in a computer system is connected to it!!!
- Produced in a variety of sizes (a.k.a. form factor)
- The following are components that are typically connected to a motherboard
- Hard Drive
- Optical Drive (DVD, CD, etc)þ
- Video Card
- Power supply
- A motherboard contains the following slots, sockets, and connectors for components
- Exercise: What components are typically connected to each slot or port?
- PCI expansion slot
- AGP video slot
- IDE socket
- Primary and secondary
- RAM slot
- Processor socket (for CPU)
- The chipset is the “glue” that connects the CPU to the rest of the motherboard.
- consists of two parts: the north bridge and the south bridge
- North bridge
- Memory controller hub
- Handles communication between CPU and memory
- South bridge
- I/O controller hub
- Handles communications between CPU and I/O devices
- Basic Input/Output System
- BIOS is a built-in software (code built into a chip) that operates the basic functions of a computer
- BIOS contains all the code required to control the keyboard, display screen, disk drives, serial communications, and a number of miscellaneous functions
Other Important Specifications
- CPU Socket – slot that the houses the CPU in a computer system.
- Each socket is meant to house specific types of CPU’s and may not be compatible with others
CPU – Central Processing Unit
- Central Processing Unit
- The CPU or Central Processing Unit
- The part of a computer that interprets and executes instructions.
- It’s the “brains” of the computer.
- The socket type of the motherboard and CPU MUST match!!!
- One hertz: is a one cycle per second
- 1 kilohertz (KHz) = 10241 hertz
- 1 megahertz (MHz) = 10242 hertz
- 1 gigahertz (GHz) = 10243 hertz
- Socket type
- The physical connection between the motherboard and CPU
- The slot where the CPU is attached to the motherboard
- E.g. socket LGA775, socket 478,….
- Clock rate
- Measured in cycles per second (hertz)
- E.g. megahertz, gigahertz
- FSB (Front Side Bus)
- A circuit that connects one part of the motherboard to another
- The more data a bus can handle at one time, the faster it allows information to travel.
- The speed of the bus is measured in megahertz
- FSB is a subsystem that carries data from the CPU to motherboard (north bridge)
- Temporary storage for data that is accessed frequently.
- Frequently accessed data is copied into cache
- Copied Data can be accessed once stored in cache instead of accessing original data (which tends to take more time).
- Measured in bytes (e.g. megabytes)
- Used in CPU, motherboard, internet browsers
Types of CPU’s
- Current processor is the Intel Core 2 which is the 8th generation of CPU from the x86 architecture
- Core 2 replaces the Pentium 4 CPU’s
- Core 2 consists of three models
- Core 2 duo – a single chip containing 2 distinct processors that work simultaneously
- Core Quad – a single chip containing 4 distinct processors
- Core Extreme – duo or quad with a higher processor and bus speed designed for servers and high-end workstations
- Sempron – 32-bit CPU’s marketed towards the value market
- Athlon 64 – the first 64-bit CPU targeted towards the average consumer
- Athlon 64 XP – AMD’s first dual core processor which contains two Athlon 64 Cores in a single chip
Power Supply Unit
- Supplies electricity to components in a computer system
- Converts AC (general purpose) to low voltage DC used by the system
- typical voltages supplied are:
- 3.3 volts (digital circuits)
- 5 volts (digital circuits)
- 12 volts (motors, fans)
Graphics Processing Unit
- Translates image data from the computer into a format that can be displayed by the monitor
- Performs calculations related to producing an image (This requires memory!)
- Each motherboard supports only a limited range of video card formats
- used by the computer to record and play audio by converting analog sound into digital information and back again.
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