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5 Basic components of a computer

Every computer needs these 5 components (plus others) to start up. Everyone who owns a laptop, computer, phone, or anything electronical should have a good idea of what’s inside the machines we all use daily.


Motherboard – Ties the computers components together on one spot and allows them to communicate with each other. Without it none of the pieces – CPU, GPU, RAM could interact together. It holds most of the main components and total functionality is necessary for a computer to work.

Central processing unit (CPU) – is basically the brain of your computer. It is the primary component that process instructions from the user. It runs the operating system, constantly receiving input from the user. It processes the data and produces output which may be stored or seen on screen.

Graphics processing unit (GPU) – used to accelerate the rendering of 3d graphics. It is very important to people who enjoy gaming, and those who work in artificial intelligence and other creative industries.

Random access memory (RAM) – another important component in your systems performance. RAM gives applications a place to store and access data on a short-term basis. The browser you’re reading this from is currently using RAM. Anything left in the RAM (open windows, applications) all close when the computer shuts down and will not be found upon booting back up.

Storage – solid state drive (SSD) or hard disk drive (HDD). These are where anything on your computer downloads to. Applications, photos, games all take up space in here. An SSD is the upgraded version of a HDD, operating faster and uses a flash chip to speed up the process of downloads, opening applications etc. and should be prioritized over HDD when choosing a computer.

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Steve Wholer

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