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What is a Motherboard?

  • Last Updated : 16 Nov, 2020

The motherboard serves as a single platform to connect all of the parts of a computer together. It can be considered as the backbone of the computer.

It connects the CPU, Memory, Hard drives, Optical drives, Video card, Sound card, and other parts. It also connects Expansion cards directly or via cables. 

A computer is an electronic device that processes the data with respect to the user’s requirements using IO devices. The data processing takes place in a processor, an important component. The processor is situated in a hardware circuit board called the motherboard or Printed Circuit Board(PCB). 

 



History

The first-ever motherboard was used by the IBM in early 1980s. It was eventually called as planar. It is the main component through which the communication takes place between the other components and connects all the peripherals, therefore referred to as the motherboard. A computer is lifeless without a motherboard. The other extensions of the motherboard are referred to as daughter boards. 

Features of motherboard

A motherboard comes with following features:

  • Motherboard varies greatly in supporting various types of components.
  • Motherboard supports a single type of CPU and few types of memories.
  • Video cards, Hard drives, Sound cards have to be compatible with the motherboard to function properly.
  • Motherboard, Cases, and Power supplies must be compatible to work properly together.

 

Components

A motherboard is made of plastic and silicon as well. It is a hub of a computer system. A motherboard is a complex component with various kinds of ports, slots, cables connected to it. 
Some of them are: 
 

  • RAM slots(Random Access Memory): Also called as main memory, it is a primary storage device for storage huge bytes of data.
  • CPU Fan and HeatSink: Its main function is to cool down the CPU by absorbing the heat while the system is running.
  • North bridge: Due to its location, it is referred to as Northbridge.
  • South bridge: Controls the Input and Output functions.
  • Capacitors: Data storage
  • Resistors: Data storage
  • CMOS battery(Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor): A battery that provides backup power.
  • PCI Slots(Peripheral Component Interconnect): Connects the peripherals.
  • SATA cables(Serial Advanced Technology Attachment): Data transfer
  • BIOS(Basic Input Output System): Controls the basic input-output functions.
  • Processor: the main component for the data processing.
  • AGP(Accelerated Graphics Port): For displaying graphics on the screen.
  • IDE(Integrated Drive Electronics): Used for data transfer.
  • Processor socket: To insert or remove the processor.
  • Integrated Circuits (IC): for data processing and storage.

 

Advantages

 

  • A motherboard is the main component without which a computer cannot function.
  • Any peripheral can be connected and data transfer is faster.

Popular Manufacturers

Following are the popular manufacturers of the motherboard:

  • ASUS
  • Intel
  • Gigabyte
  • MSI
  • ABIT

 

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