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Computer Hardware

Presented by:
Huma Khan
Jawad Mughal
Mahpara Hameed
Wajiha Khan
Ziyad Mehtab
What is a Computer?
 An electronic device that stores, retrieves, and
processes data, and can be programmed with
 It is a device capable of performing computations
and making logical decisions
 Computers process data under the control of sets of
instructions called computer programs
 A computer is composed of hardware and software,
and can exist in a variety of sizes and
The Personal Computer

 A personal computer is made up of multiple

physical components of computer
hardware, upon which can be installed
an operating system and a multitude
of software to perform the operator's desired
Hardware & Software
 The term hardware refers to the physical components of
your computer such as the system unit, mouse,
keyboard, monitor etc.
 The software is the instructions that makes the computer
work. Software is held either on your computers hard
disk, CD-ROM, DVD or on a diskette (floppy disk) and is
loaded (i.e. copied) from the disk into the computers
RAM (Random Access Memory), as and when required.
The Von Neumann Computer
 This model of the typical digital computer is often called the Von
Neumann computer.

Primary Memory

Input CPU Output

Units (Central Processing Unit) Units
How Computer Memory Is
 All computers work on a binary numbering system, i.e. they process
data in one's or zero's. This 1 or 0 level of storage is called a bit.
 Byte
 A byte consists of eight bits.
 Kilobyte
 A kilobyte (KB) consists of 1024 bytes.
 Megabyte
 A megabyte (MB) consists of 1024 kilobytes.
 Gigabyte
 A gigabyte (GB) consists of 1024 megabytes.
Main Parts of a Computer
 Microprocessors -- "The brain of the computer”
 PCs primarily use microprocessors (sometimes called the chip).
 The older Intel versions include the 386, 486 and now the Pentium
 The CPU (Central Processing Unit) is normally an Intel
Pentium (or equivalent) and it is one of the most important
components within your computer.
 It determines how fast your computer will run and is measured by
its MHz speed. Thus a 600 MHz Pentium is much faster than say a
 MHz Pentium CPU.
 It is the CPU that performs all the calculations within the computer.
Main Parts of a Computer
 The Central Processing Unit ( CPU)
 Often referred to as the “brain” of the computer.
 Responsible for controlling all activities of the computer
 The three major components of the CPU are:
1. Arithmetic Unit (Computations performed)
Accumulator (Results of computations kept here)
2. Control Unit (Has two locations where numbers are kept)
Instruction Register (Instruction placed here for analysis)
Program Counter (Which instruction will be performed next?)
3. Instruction Decoding Unit (Decodes the instruction)
 Motherboard: The place where most of the electronics
including the CPU are mounted.
Main Parts of a Computer
 Memory -- "How the processor stores and uses
immediate data“

 Primary storage or memory is where the data and

program that are currently in operation or being
accessed are stored during use. It consists of
electronic circuits; extremely fast and expensive.
Main Parts of a Computer
 RAM – Random Access Memory (Volatile)
 The main 'working' memory used by the computer.
 When the operating system loads from disk when you first switch on
the computer, it is copied into RAM. As a rough rule, a Microsoft
Windows based computer will operate faster if you install more RAM.
Data and programs stored in RAM are volatile (i.e. the information is
lost when you switch off the computer).
 ROM – Read Only Memory (Non-Volatile)
 Read Only Memory (ROM) as the name suggests is a special type of
memory chip that holds software that can be read but not written to.
 A good example is the ROM-BIOS chip, which contains read-only
 Often network cards and video cards also contain ROM chips.
Main Parts of a Computer
 Secondary storage or memory;
 Long-term, non-changeable
 Magnetic Disk
 Hard disks
 Floppy disks
 Magnetic Tape
 Optical Disk
 CD-ROM (just readable or readable and writeable - CD-
 DVD (same as CD-ROM)
 Storage Area Networks
The Factors that Impact a
Computer's Performance
 CPU speed

 RAM size

 Hard disk speed and capacity

Central Processing Unit and
*Primary Memory

* Note: Computer has

2 memories: Primary
and Secondary.

 A CPU placed on a single miniature chip; basis

of PC (personal computer)

 Speed and performance factors

 number of bits the computer can process at one time
(word length)
 Speed of the Clock
 Number of bits that can be moved at one time
between the CPU, primary storage & other devices
(Data Bus width )
Microprocessor Examples
Name Manufacturer Word Length Clock Speed Data Bus

Pentium 2 Intel 32 *MHz 233-450 64

Celeron Intel 32 MHz 500-2600 64
Pentium III Intel 32 MHz 500-1400 64
Pentium IV Intel 32 *GHz 3.2 64
Itanium II Intel 64 GHz 1.5 128
Opteron AMD 64 Ghz 2.6 128

MHz = millions of Hertz (measure of speed)

GHz = billions of Hertz
Sequential and Parallel
Basic Concepts of Computer
 Input/Output (I/O): Refers to the process of
getting information into and out of the
 Input Devices -- "How to tell it what to do”
 Those parts of the computer receiving information to

 Output Devices -- "How it shows you what it is

 Those parts of the computer that provide results of
computation to the person using the computer.
Basic Concepts of Computer
Hardware (cont.)
 Storage Devices -- "How it saves data and
 Hard disk drives are an internal, higher capacity drive
which also stores the operating system which runs
when you power on the computer.
 - "Floppy" disk drives allow you to save work on small

disks and take the data with you.

Input Devices
 The Mouse: Used to ‘drive’ Microsoft Windows
 The Keyboard: The keyboard is still the commonest way of
entering information into a computer
 Scanners: A scanner allows you to scan printed material
and convert it into a file format that may be used within the
 Touch Pads: A device that lays on the desktop and
responds to pressure
 Light Pens: Used to allow users to point to areas on a
 Joysticks: Many games require a joystick for the proper
playing of the game
Input Devices
 Readers (Bar code reader; Magnetic Ink Character
Recognition device)
 Other examples:
 Voice recognition hardware
 Digital camera
Output Devices
 VDU: The computer screen is used for outputting information
in an understandable format
 Printers: There are many different types of printers.
 In large organizations laser printers are most commonly used
due to the fact that they can print very fast and give a very
high quality output.
 Plotters: A plotter is an output device similar to a printer, but
normally allows you to print larger images.
 Speakers: Enhances the value of educational and
presentation products.
 Speech synthesisers: Gives you the ability to not only to
display text on a monitor but also to read the text to you
Storage Devices
 Hard Disks
■ Speed:
■ Very fast!
■ The speed of a hard disk is often quoted as "average access
time“ speed, measured in milliseconds. The smaller this number
the faster the disk.
■ Capacity:
■ Enormous! Often 40/80 Gigabytes. A Gigabyte is equivalent to
1024 Megabytes.
■ Cost:
■ Hard disks costs are falling rapidly and normally represent the
cheapest way of storing data.
Storage Devices

 Diskettes (Floppy Disks)

■ Speed:
■ Very slow!
■ Capacity:
■ Normally 1.44 Mbytes.
■ Cost:
■ Very cheap.
Storage Devices

 CD-ROM Disks
■ Speed:
■ Much slower than hard disks. The original CD-ROM speciation is
given a value of 1x speed, and later, faster CD-ROMs are
quoted as a multiple of this value.
■ Capacity:
■ Around 650 Mbytes and more.
■ Cost:
■ Relatively higher than hard disks.
Storage Devices

 DVD Drives
■ Speed:
■ Much faster than CD-ROM drives but not as fast as hard disks.
■ Capacity:
■ Up to 17 Gbytes.
■ Cost:
■ Slightly higher than CD-ROM drives.
The four most important
characteristics of storage
 Speed and access time

 Cost / Removable versus non-removable

 Capacity

 Type of access
Types of Memory Access

 Sequential - Obtained by proceeding through

the storage medium from the beginning until
the designated area is reached (as in
magnetic tape).

 Random Access - Direct access (as in

floppy and hard disks).
Connecting Hardware to the
 Hardware needs access through some general input/output
 Port: The pathway for data to go into and out of the computer

from external devices such as keyboards.

 Serial port: sends one bit at a time (115 Kbps)
 Parallel port: sends 8 bits at a time
 Firewire: a high speed connection (400 Mbps)
 USB (universal serial bus): a high speed connection (11
 Wireless: no cable, generally slower
Connecting Hardware to the
.)computer (cont
 Peripheral device: A piece of hardware like a
printer or disk drive, that is outside the main
 Hardware needs software on the computer
that can service the device.
 Device driver: Software addition to the operating
system that will allow the computer to
communicate with a particular device.