How Computers Work

RAM-CPU-HDD

What is a CPU?

CPU stands for central processing unit, and performs all the operations, tasks and calculations that are needed by the person who is using the computer. Intel and AMD are two companies that make CPUs and the speed of CPUs are measured in gigahertz. One gigahertz represents 1 billion cycles a second.

What does RAM do?

RAM stands for random access memory and stores the data which is currently in use, and has not been saved to the hard disc drive. For example, when you are writing a word document, the text that hasn't been saved is being stored on the RAM. This type of memory is called volatile memory. Most modern PCs will have between 1 and 8 gigabytes of RAM.

Where is permanent data stored?

Most computers have a hard disc drive (HDD) to store permanent data. Binary code is magnetically stored on a metal disc, and most modern computers have an HDD that can store between 500mb to 1TB of data. In 1 terabyte, there are 1024 gigabytes.