Block Diagram of a Computer

Brief explanation about the typical block diagram of a computer.

The above image shows the block diagram of a typical computer. The major parts are the central processing unit or CPU. Primary and Secondary memory and Input / Output devices

Central Processing Unit

The CPU or microprocessor is the heart of the computer, which controls the basic operations inside computer. It fetches the binary-coded instructions from the memory, decodes the instructions into a series of simple actions, and carries out these actions. The CPU includes an arithmetic logic unit (ALU), which can perform arithmetic and logical operations on binary words when instructed to do so. CPU contains registers for temporary storage. The CPU also contains an address counter which is used to hold the address of the next instruction o data to be fetched from memory and general purpose registers (GPR) which are used for temporary storage of data

Primary Memory

The purpose of primary memory is to store the binary instructions to be executed by the computer. It also stores binary data which the computer processes. The size of the memory determines the amount of memory we can use for programs and data.

There are two types of memory – RAM and ROM

RAM – Random Access Memory

ROM – Read Only Memory

Secondary Memory

Secondary memory is the term used to represent other data storage devices of the computer system like Hard disk drive, floppy disk drive, CD ROM drive etc.

When you power on your computer, the Operating system stored in your Hard disk drive is copied to main memory. The process is called booting.

Input / Output Devices

The function of input device is to give input data to CPU. Commonly used input devices are keyboard, mouse, scanner, joystick etc. The output devices serve the function of displaying the output given by CPU. We generally use a Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) based monitor or a Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) monitor for this purposed. The output can be taken in hard copy form with help of output devices like printer or plotter.


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