What is Computer Hardware?

What is Computer Hardware?

Computer hardware refers to the physical parts or components of a computer, such as a monitor, mouse, keyboard, computer data storage, graphic cards, sound cards, motherboards, etc. Hardware devices are what you can physically touch.

It’s important to know the components of your computer hardware and how they work together because they are what enable you to do all of the things you love on your computer, like playing games, browsing the internet, and watching videos. Without computer hardware, there would be no computer. So next time you’re using your computer, take a moment to think about all of the stunningly designed hardware that makes it possible.

Types of Hardware Devices
Types of Hardware Devices

There are basically two types of hardware components.

  • Internal hardware components
  • External hardware components

What is Internal Hardware Components?

The internal hardware components of a computer include the motherboard, CPU, RAM, hard drive, and optical drive.

  • The Motherboard is the main circuit board in the computer and it houses the CPU, RAM, and other important components.
  • CPU (Central Processing Unit) is the “brain” of the computer and it executes all of the commands that you give to the computer.
  • RAM (Random Access Memory) is a type of memory that is used to store data temporarily.
  • A Hard drive or SSD (Solid State Drive) is where all of your files and data are stored permanently.
  • Power Supply (SMPS) Used to supply all other components with power (electricity) converted from the outlet.
  • The Optical drive is used to read and write CDs and DVDs.
  • Video Card (GPU) is used for processing images and videos and renders graphical input to project it as an output to display devices (monitor).

What is the External Hardware Components?

External hardware components are those that are not an integral part of the computer itself and are usually added later. Those would include the printer, mouse, keyboard, monitor, headphones, and microphone. Some of these (monitor, keyboard, and mouse) interface directly with the user while others (printer, headphones, and microphone) interface with other devices or applications.

All external hardware components require additional external power in order to function properly.

All external hardware components must also be compatible with both the computer itself and any other external hardware components that may be attached. For example, a printer must be compatible with both the computer and the type of paper being used. A microphone must be compatible with both the sound card and the recording software.

A common list of external hardware components is used with a computer.

  • Mouse
  • Keyboard
  • Display monitor
  • Speakers
  • Microphone
  • USB flash drive
  • Printer
  • Scanner

Difference between Hardware vs Software?

When it comes to computers, there are two main types of components: hardware and software.

It’s very important to understand when learning about computers. This is because both work together in order for a computer to function properly. It is important to note that without either component, a computer would not be able to run. Therefore, the difference between Hardware vs Software becomes an important topic when discussing computers.

  • Hardware refers to the physical parts of a computer, such as a monitor, keyboard, and drive. In contrast, the software is a set of instructions that tells the hardware what to do.
  • The operating system is a prime example of software. The difference between Hardware vs software can be simply explained as Physical components are called hardware whereas Instructions are called software. Another difference between Hardware vs software is that you can physically touch hardware but you cannot touch software.
  • The difference between Hardware and software is quite significant as one deals with physical components while the other deals with a set of instructions. Hence we can see that the Difference between Hardware vs software is that one is an intangible component while the other is a tangible component.
  • The Difference can be further elaborated by saying that without hardware, the software cannot be used however without software, hardware can still be used though it will not serve any purpose.

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