The processor (CPU) is essentially the brain of a computer system. The role of the CPU is mainly to process everything from basic instructions to complex function. The well known measure of the CPU is clock speed and it is measured in MHz or GHz. The different manufacturers of the CPU are Texas Instruments, Intel Corp, Centaur Technology etc..
A motherboard (mobo) is basically the main circuit board of a computer system. All the different components such as CPU, memory, hard drives, optical drives, video card and sound card are attached individually to the motherboard. However, the motherboard is perhaps the most essential hardware component of a computer system as it enables all the other hardware components to work together.
BIOS (basic input and output system) are a small collection of programs usually stored in the ROM memory that enable a computer to start an operating system. The BIOS also allows the computer to communicate with devices in the system such as disk drives, keyboard, monitor, printer and communications port. Power Supply
A power supply unit (PSU) is a hardware device that provides electrical energy to electrical devices in a computer system. The power supply unit has been typically designed to convert currents from AC (alternating current) to DC (direct current). Furthermore, the power supply unit must function correctly for the other components in the system to work perfectly.
Heat sink and fan
A heat sink is an electronic device that has been designed specifically to draw heat away from the CPU and prevent it from overheating. However, the heat sink itself can become too hot sometimes. So therefore, a fan is often used to keep cool both of the CPU and the heat sink.
IDE (Integrated Drive Electronics) is a hardware interface that is commonly used to connect devices such as hard disks, CD-ROM drives, optical discs and tape drives to a computer.
EIDE (Enhanced Integrated Drive Electronics) is the latest standard that is used especially to control communication between the CPU and hard drives.
A USB port is essentially a connection point on the computer where a USB cable is plugged. There are usually four USB ports on desktop computers and at least two USB ports on laptops.
A printer is an output device that transfers directly data stored electronically into hard copies (papers). The two main types of printers that are commonly used by consumers are inkjet and laser printers.
A network card (also called Network Interface Card) is a computer circuit that physically enable the connection between the computer and the network cable. However, this connection allows the computer to communicate with servers and also with other computers on the network.
RAM (Random Access Memory) is a type of computer memory that enables end-users to accessed data regularly. The data stored on a RAM memory can easily be lost when the memory is unpowered.
ROM memory (Read Only Memory) is essentially a computer storage into which data cannot be removed or edited.
How do these components communicate?
An address bus is a connection between the central processing unit (CPU) and the memory that identifies particular locations (addresses) in the main memory.
A data bus is a series of wires that enable for the transferring of data from one component to another.
A control bus is the physical connections that carry orders and signals between the central processing unit (CPU) and other hardware components within the computer.