061 - What is Computer Motherboard

A Motherboard serves as a single platform or the main circuit board to connect all of the parts of a computer together. A motherboard connects CPU, memory, hard drives, optical drives, video card, sound card, and other ports and expansion cards directly or via cables. It can be considered as the backbone of a computer.

A Motherboard a printed circuit board containing the principal components of a computer or other device, with connectors into which other circuit boards can be slotted. Motherboard contains the connectors for attaching additional boards.  

Typically, the motherboard contains the CPU, BIOS, memory, mass storage interfaces, serial and parallel ports, expansion slots, and all the controllers required to control standard peripheral devices, such as the display screen, mouse, keyboard, and disk drive. 

Collectively, all these chips that reside on the motherboard are known as the motherboard's chipset. 

Motherboard Components:

01. CPU socket
• Slot for processor or Central Processing Unit (CPU). 
02. Heat Sink and Fan
• Thermal conductive metal device with cooling fan. 
03. Northbridge
• a Memory Controller Hub (MCH). The Northbridge is the chip that connect a CPU to memory, the PCI bus, Level 2 cache and AGP activities. The Northbridge chips communicate with the CPU through the FSB. 
04. Southbridge
• a Input/Output Controller Hub (ICH). The Southbridge is the chip that controls all of the computers I/O functions, such as USB, audio, serial, the system BIOS, the ISA bus, the interrupt controller and the IDE channels. In other words, all of the functions of a processor except memory, PCI and AGP. 
05. CMOS Battery
• Supplies power to store BIOS settings and keep the real-time clock running. 
06. RAM slots
• Slot for memory or Random Access Memory (RAM). 
07. PCI / PCIE / PCIX slots
• Slot for expansion cards such as video cards, audio cards, network cards and connector cards. 
08. IDE Connector
• Connects to older hard drive disks and optical drives for data transfer. 
09. SATA Connector
• Connects to modern hard disk drives, solid state drives and optical drives for data transfer. 
10. ATX power connector
• Connects to the 24-pin Advanced Technology eXtended (ATX) power cable of a power supply unit which supplies power to the motherboard. 
11. Front Panel Ports
• for LED Lights, Power and Reset Button. 
12. Back Panel Connectors
• I/O Peripherals devices. 
13. PS2 ports
• for connecting a mouse and keyboard. 
14. USB ports
• for connecting more peripherals. 
15. VGA connector
• for connecting a monitor. 
16. Ethernet port
• for connecting the computer to a network. 
17. Jacks
• Line-In Line-Out and microphone for connecting headset, speaker or Microphone.

Motherboard is also known as: main board, system board, planar board, logic board or colloquially, a mobo.

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