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Guide to managing and maintaining your PC Chapter 1
Guide to managing and maintaining your PC Chapter 1
Terms in this set (92)
20-pin P1 connector
Used by an older aTX power supply and motherboard and provided +3.3 volts, +5 volts, +12 volts, 12 volts, and an optional and rarely used 5 volts.
24-pin P1 connector
Used by aTX Version 2.2 power supply and motherboard and provides additional power for PCI Express slots.
4-pin motherboard auxiliary connector
a connector on the motherboard used to provide additional power to the processor other than that provided by the P1 connector.
8-pin motherboard auxiliary connector
a connector on the motherboard used to provide additional power to the processor other than that provided by the P1 connector or the earlier 4-pin auxiliary connector.
alternating current (aC)
Current that cycles back and forth rather than traveling in only one direction. In the United States, the aC voltage from a standard wall outlet is normally between 110 and 115 V. In Europe, the standard aC voltage from a wall outlet is 220 V.
a measure of electrical current.
Static shielding bags that new computer components are shipped in.
Gloves designed to prevent an ESD (electrostatic discharge) between you and a device, as you pick it up and handle it.
antistatic wrist strap
See ground bracelet.
aTX (advanced Technology Extended)
The most common form factor for PC systems presently in use, originally introduced by Intel in 1995. aTX motherboards and cases make better use of space and resources than did the earlier aT form factor.
aTX12V power supply
an aTX Version 2.1 power supply that provides a 12 V power cord with a 4-pin connector to be used by the auxiliary 4-pin power connector on motherboards used to provide extra power for processors.
Berg power connector
a type of power connector used by a power cord to provide power to a floppy disk drive.
BIOS (basic input/output system)
Firmware that can control much of a computer's input/output functions, such as communication with the keyboard and the monitor.
The program in system BIOS that can change the values in CMOS RaM. Also called CMOS setup.
central processing unit (CPU)
also called a microprocessor or processor. The component where almost all processing of data and instructions takes place. The CPU receives data input, processes information, and executes instructions.
Class C fire extinguisher
a fire extinguisher rated to put out electrical fires.
See BIOS setup.
a 15-pin female port that transmits analog video.
a computer case that lies flat and sometimes serves double-duty as a monitor stand.
DIMM (dual inline memory module)
a miniature circuit board installed on a motherboard to hold memory. DIMMs can hold up to 16 GB of RaM on a single module.
direct current (DC)
Current that travels in only one direction (the type of electricity provided by batteries). Computer power supplies transform aC to low DC.
a port that transmits digital video and audio (not analog transmissions) and is slowly replacing VGa and DVI ports on personal computers.
dual voltage selector switch
a switch on the back of the computer case where you can switch the input voltage to the power supply to 115 V used in the United States or 220 V used in other countries.
DVI (Digital Video Interface) port
a port that transmits digital or analog video.
electrostatic discharge (ESD)
another name for static electricity, which can damage chips and destroy motherboards, even though it might not be felt or seen with the naked eye.
See antistatic gloves.
See ground mat.
See ground bracelet.
See network port.
a circuit board inserted into a slot on the motherboard to enhance the capability of the computer.
external SaTa (eSaTa)
a standard for external drives based on SaTa that uses a special external shielded SaTa cable up to 2 meters long. eSaTa is up to six times faster than USB or FireWire.
field replaceable unit (FRU)
a component in a computer or device that can be replaced with a new component without sending the computer or device back to the manufacturer. Examples: power supply, DIMM, motherboard, hard disk drive.
a port used for high-speed multimedia devices such as camcorders. also called an IEEE 1394 port.
Software that is permanently stored in a chip. The BIOS on a motherboard is an example of firmware.
floppy disk drive (FDD)
a drive that can hold either a 5½ inch or 3¼ inch floppy disk. also called floppy drive.
See floppy disk drive (FDD).
a set of specifications on the size, shape, and configuration of a computer hardware component such as a case, power supply, or motherboard.
a strap you wear around your wrist that is attached to the computer case, ground mat, or another ground so that ESD is discharged from your body before you touch sensitive components inside a computer. also called static strap, ground strap, ESD bracelet.
a mat that dissipates ESD and is commonly used by technicians who repair and assemble computers at their workbenches or in an assembly line.
hard disk drive (HDD)
See hard drive.
The main secondary storage device of a computer. Two technologies are currently used by hard drives: magnetic and solid state. also called hard disk drive (HDD).
HDMI (High Definition Multimedia Interface) port
a digital audio and video interface standard currently used on televisions and other home theater equipment and expected to ultimately replace DVI.
a piece of metal, with cooling fins, that can be attached to or mounted on an integrated chip (such as the CPU) to dissipate heat.
See FireWire port.
The main components installed in a computer case.
a device that converts DC to aC.
a measure of work or energy. One joule of energy produces one watt of power for one second.
a device used to test a port in a computer or other device to make sure the port is working and might also test the throughput or speed of the port.
Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS)
a document that explains how to properly handle substances such as chemical solvents, it includes information such as physical data, toxicity, health effects, first aid, storage, disposal, and spill procedures.
a version of the aTX form factor. MicroaTX addresses some new technologies that were developed after the original introduction of aTX.
See central processing unit (CPU).
a port used to connect dial-up phone lines to computers.
Molex power connector
a 4-pin power connector used to provide power to a PaTa hard drive or optical drive.
The main board in the computer, also called the system board. The CPU, ROM chips, DIMMs, RIMMs, and interface cards are plugged into the motherboard.
a device used to measure the various attributes of an electrical circuit. The most common measurements are voltage, current, and resistance.
a port used by a network cable to connect to the wired network.
The standard unit of measurement for electrical resistance. Resistors are rated in ohms.
parallel aTa (PaTa)
an older IDE cabling method that uses a 40-pin flat or round data cable or an 80-conductor cable and a 40-pin IDE connector. See also serial aTa.
an outdated female 25-pin port on a computer that transmitted data in parallel, 8 bits at a time, and was usually used with a printer. The names for parallel ports are LPT1 and LPT2. Parallel ports have been replaced by USB ports.
PCI (Peripheral Component Interconnect)
a bus common to desktop computers that uses a 32-bit wide or a 64-bit data path. Several variations of PCI exist. One or more notches on a PCI slot keep the wrong PCI cards from being inserted in the PCI slot.
PCI Express (PCIe)
The latest evolution of PCI, which is not backward-compatible with earlier PCI slots and cards. PCIe slots come in several sizes, including PCIe x1, PCIe x4, PCIe x8, and PCIe x16.
POST (power-on self test)
a self-diagnostic program used to perform a simple test of the CPU, RaM, and various I/O devices. The POST is performed by startup BIOS when the computer is first turned on, and is stored in ROM-BIOS.
a test card installed in a slot on the motherboard that is used to help discover and report computer errors and conflicts that occur when a computer is first turned on and before the operating system is launched.
POST diagnostic card
See POST card.
a box inside the computer case that receives power and converts it to provide power to the motherboard and other installed devices. Power supplies provide 3.3, 5, and 12 volts DC. also called a power supply unit (PSU).
power supply tester
a device that can test the output of each power cord coming from a power supply.
power supply unit (PSU)
See power supply.
See central processing unit (CPU).
a round 6-pin port used by a keyboard or mouse.
RaM (random access memory)
Memory modules on the motherboard containing microchips used to temporarily hold data and programs while the CPU processes both. Information in RaM is lost when the PC is turned off.
an electrical device that converts aC to DC. a computer power supply contains a rectifier.
See RJ-11 jack.
a port that looks like a large phone jack and is used by twisted-pair cable to connect to a wired network adapter or other hardware device. RJ stands for registered jack.
a 4-pin or 7-pin round video port that sends two signals over the cable, one for color and the other for brightness, and is used by some highend TVs and video equipment.
S/PDIF (Sony Philips Digital Interface) sound port
a port that connects to an external home theater audio system, providing digital audio output and the nest signal quality.
SaTa power connector
a 15-pin flat power connector that provides power to SaTa drives.
a method to safeguard against ESD that involves touching the computer case or power supply before touching a component in the computer case.
serial aTa (SaTa)
an aTaPI interface standard that uses a narrower and more reliable cable than the 80-conductor cable and is easier to configure than PaTa systems. See also parallel aTa.
a male 9-pin or 25-pin port on a computer system used by slower I/O devices such as a mouse or modem. Data travels serially, one bit at a time, through the port. Serial ports are sometimes configured as COM1, COM2, COM3, or COM4.
Part of system BIOS that is responsible for controlling the computer when it is first turned on. Startup BIOS gives control over to the OS once it is loaded.
(basic input/output system) BIOS located on the motherboard that is used to control essential devices before the OS is loaded.
a port that transmits both video and data on the same port and cable. The port is shaped the same as the DisplayPort and is compatible with DisplayPort devices.
The largest type of personal computer case. Tower cases stand vertically and can be as high as two feet tall. They have more drive bays and are a good choice for computer users who anticipate making significant upgrades.
an electrical device that changes the ratio of current to voltage. a computer power supply is basically a transformer and a rectifier.
Loose cables or cords in a traffic area where people can trip over them.
USB (Universal Serial Bus) port
a type of port designed to make installation and configuration of I/O devices easy, providing room for as many as 127 devices daisy-chained together.
VGa (Video Graphics array) port
a 15-pin analog video port popular for many years.
Memory used by the video controller. The memory might be contained on a video card or be part of system memory. When part of system memory, the memory is dedicated by Windows to video.
a measure of potential difference in an electrical circuit. a computer aTX power supply usually provides five separate voltages: 12 V, 12 V, 5 V, 5 V, and 3.3 V.
The unit of electricity used to measure power. a typical computer may use a power supply that provides 500W.
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