Basic components of a computer system

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Computer is something that most of us have at our home and regularly use but do we actually know what the components of a computer system are? Understanding the entire computer is a bit difficult for those who are not so technology loving, especially because the technology differs from model to model. Here I am highlighting basic components of a computer system that are called the functional Units.

1. Input Unit

Like any electronic device computer also needs instructions and data entered into it. The input unit uses the entered instructions and data and converts them into a language that the computer system (codes) can read or understand; this is done to help the computer system perform the needed task thereby linking it to the outer world.

2. Output Unit

Output Unit is the exact opposite of Input Unit in its function. When the data and instructions are converted into codes and the task is performed by the computer, the needed data remains in codes therefore the output unit converts the codes into a result that the outside world can understand.

3. Storage Unit

Main storage or Storage unit of a computer system has a function similar to its name. The data that is entered, then processed and finally outputted is stored by this unit. It helps in giving access to data quite easily when you want and such a storage unit also helps you to go through the changed data. To explain in simple words, Storage unit is a safe that holds all the data that has been entered, processed and outputted.

4. Central Processing Unit (CPU)

CPU or Central Processing Unit is essentially the heart and brain of the computer as it controls all devices (external as well as internal) and even performs Arithmetic and Logical operations. In simple words CPU helps in interpreting signals and code in a program, understands them and executes the functions present in them. The structures and functions of the CPU have changed and improved over the years making it more compact and easy to use. The CPU is located in a specialized slot (differs for models and style) in the motherboard and its shape is of a small square, the CPU also tends to get overheated therefore needs cooling with a fan. Intel and Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) are two of the prominent CPU brands in today’s market.

5. Arithmetic and Logic Unit (ALU)

This unit of the computer system is the actual place where during the processing operations execution of the instructions takes place. In simple words ALU performs mathematical functions like multiplication, division etc. and also performs basic logical operations.

6. Control Unit

All the activities of the external and internal devices are directed and controlled by the control unit. In simple words this unit organizes and manages the whole computer system.

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