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2.1 Types and components of computer systems

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a physical component that you can touch
Hardware definition
mouse/ keyboard/ monitor/ screen/ VDU
Hardware example
run on a computer and is instructions that tell the computer what to do
Software definition
operating systems (GUI and CLI), applications (word processing) and utilities
Software examples
allows the user to interact with a computer rather than having to type in a number of commands
GUI main feature
easy to use due to the visual nature of the interface – the user has lots of visual clues as to what to do
GUI advantage
a powerful computer is needed
GUI disadvantage
requires a user to type in instructions in order for your computer to complete the basic operations.
CLI main feature
the user is in direct communication with the computer and is not restricted to a number of pre-determined options
CLI advantage
the user has to learn the commands and key them in every time an operation is to be carried out
CLI disadvantage
Random access memory
RAM stands for...
Read only memory
ROM stands for...
Graphical User Interface
GUI stands for...
Command Line Interface
CLI stands for...
The working memory of the computer, volatile, erases when the computer turns off, can read write
boot-up programme – needed to start the computer when it is switched on, non-volatile, permanent memory
the device that carries out software instructions (the 'brain' of the computer)
used by large businesses, in government offices or by universities
Mainframe uses
Allows several users, sometimes hundreds, to use it at the same time. Very powerful
Mainframe advantages
They are very large so have to be kept in special, airtight conditioned rooms. Not portable
Mainframe disadvantages
Any data or instructions that are to be processed by the CPU must be placed into main memory
Main Memory/ Primary storage
all of the devices (apart from ROM and RAM) that can store data in a computer system.
Secondary / Backing Storage