It is named to the physical parts of these systems. Very concisely, any computer system Hardware has the following composition:
Central Processing Unit (CPU).
Then, we will describe briefly the functions assigned to each of this components within the system.
A computer system must have, at a minimum, an entry element that allows user’s communication with the central processing unit. Such is the case of the keyboard and mouse, through which we can send to this unit, the appropriate information. Other input devices are microphones, web cameras, scanners, readers of CDs or DVDs, the collectors of fingerprints, etc.
Similarly, there should be at least an output element through which the computer gives the user information already processed for use.
As examples of output devices, we can mention the video unit, printers, headphones, CDs or DVD recorders, the audio outputs of the computer, etc.
On the other hand, there are components that behave in both ways, that is, work with information to and from the central processing unit. Typical cases of these elements are memory storage units, touch screens, the multifunction equipment to send and receive Faxes through your computer and in general, all input/output type USB ports, network or communication ports, ports serial or parallel to be used for communication with other devices, etc.
This component of the system is considered the most important, owing to its performance as “smart element” or brain of the computer. In its origins, they were formed by a series of electronic circuits known as integrated circuits or “chips”. Those Chips, fulfilled the functions of processing and storing information. Since the 1970s, when INTEL launched the 4004 microprocessor which integrated into a single component all the functions of the CPU comprised of independent circuits, microprocessors became the CPU by excellence and relegated to oblivion to all the circuitry which had fulfilled this function.
Generally, the central processing units are divided into three basic areas:
Control unit: is responsible for organizing the execution of a sequence of instructions known as program.
Logic-arithmetic unit: it is responsible for running the basic operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division (arithmetic), in addition to the operations of “Boolean logic” when verifying a number is positive, negative or zero.
Memory resident or accommodation: in this area of the central processing unit, the information is “saved” and is where is hosted the program from the system.
Another very important internal element of the microprocessor is the internal clock, which is nothing more than an element that works through a quartz crystal that oscillates (electrically) at a constant speed to mark the rhythm or pulse in the CPU operations.
This clock defines the processing speed of the microprocessor and is also used as a reference for the actual time elapsed when it works on the basis of a cumulative counter. To specify the characteristic quantitatively more important of internal clocks of microprocessors, is used as unit of measurement the Hertz and its multiples.
The rest of the Hardware elements, which complement the work of the microprocessors, are basically the interfaces or internal cards for the management of audio, video, work and storage memories, and input/output ports.