Inside the Box The Vital Pieces Operating Systems Printers New Canaan Library Winter 2002 What we will look at: CPU or Computer Chip Main Memory RAM (Temporary Storage) Hard Disk (Permanent Storage) Drives (Portable Storage) Video/Sound Cards Ports Monitors
New Canaan LibraryWinter 2002
Today there are several different types of CPUs with different speeds to choose from:
Intel Pentium Processor
Intel Celeron Processor
AMD Athlon Processor
The AMD Athlon is a high-performance processor manufactured by AMD, suitable for businesses and home users who need a powerful processor.
AMD Duron Processor
The AMD Duron is an inexpensive CPU designed to meet the needs of most computer users with speeds up to 900 MHz.
Celeron or Duron based computers for the more cost conscious.
Pentium III, 4 or AMD Athlon for the power user.
RAM (Random Access Memory) or Main Memory
Memory comes in different forms
128 MB - 256 MB for all new computers. Look for SDRAM or RDRAM with ECC.
With Hard disk, both size and speed matters.
Types of hard disk interfaces:
(SCSI and Firewire need a separate interface card, are more expensive but faster than EIDI)
Types of EIDI drives:
DMA and Ultra ATA hard drives runs faster faster than regular EIDI
DMA 5400 RPM
ATA 7200 RPM
Recommended Hard Disk:
20 - 40 GB Ultra ATA 7-9 ms seek time, 7200 RPM
Recommended Video Card:
2X - 4X AGP, 16-64 MB RAM, 3-D card with a good brand name.
Some good brand names are:
ATI, Creative and Voodoo
Recommended Sound Card:
Diamond MX 300, 400, 600 or the family of SoundBlaster Live Cards.
CD-RW drives operate at several speeds.
Stands for Digital Versatile Disc-Read-Only Memory. You cannot change the information stored on a DVD-ROM.
A DVD-ROM is similar in size and shape to a CD-ROM, but can store much more information (4.7 to 17 GB)
The speed of a DVD-ROM drive determines how quickly data can transfer from a disc to the computer.
Current drives commonly have a speed of 6X
Recordable DVD Drives
USB and Firewire
USB (Universal Serial Bus)
Firewire (a.k.a. IEEE 1394 or I.link)
Windows NT and 2000 are more commonly used for running business applications. They provide advanced networking and security features.
Operating System (OS)
An operating system is the software that controls the overall activity of a computer.
A tiny laser beam scans across a rotating, electrostatically charged drum to create an image of the printed page. Toner sticks to the scanned image on the drum, which in turn rolls onto the paper, where the toner is fused at about 400 degrees to create a hard copy.
Color Photo Printer
Jeff Zaino, Systems Librarian
New Canaan Library