Computer Hardware

Nadia Dayem

Hard Drives and SSDs

A Hard Drive is a fundemental part of modern computers. The hard drive is where programs and files such as photos, music and apps are stored. Some hard drives contain a disk inside them called a platter, which is constantly spinning from the time you turn your computer on. The platter can get up to about 7,200 rotations per minute. Because these hard drives are so full with smaller components inside them they tend to be bigger and heavier than SSDs. An SSD has the same function as a hard drive but as it is more modern, its appearance is different. An SSD is much smaller, slimmer and therefore, lighter. This means that computers with an SSD are also slimmer. Another advantage is that it has no moving parts within it, so if you drop it the chances of its functions being disturbed is much smaller. SSD stands for Solid State Drive.

Optical Drives

An optical drive is a device that reads or writes information stored in discs such as CDs nd DVDs. An optical drive uses a laser to do this. For example a Blue-ray DVD player. Lots of video games also use one to read a disk e.g. a play station or an Xbox.


A monitor is the part of a computer or tv that displays computer's user interface and open programs, allowing the user to interact with the computer. More recent monitors are made using LCD technology (Liquid Crystal Display) which is more commonly called a flat screen. It is also used for TVs and portable video games.


A CPU (central processing unit) is placed in the very centre of the computer. Intel is the largest manufacturer of CPUs. The CPU is like the "brain" of a computer, once the user wants to do something the CPU will send GHz (gigahertz) of information through its transmitters, enabling the computer to perfom the operation.


The motherboard is the part of a computer that connects all the other devices and transmitters together. More memory chips such as RAMs can be added to the motherboard to update its function.


The RAM (random access memory) of a computer is a form of computer data storage. An RAM stores data that can be accessed quickly in any random order. Every time you open a program, it gets loaded from the harddrive into the RAM. This allows the running programs on a computer to function quickly, without lagging. The more RAM a computer has can effectively speed up your computer. Adding RAM can be more beneficial than upgrading the CPU!


I/O stands for input and output