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Hardware Components Essay

There are several types of hardware storage devices invented and designed to facilitate encoded and retrieved data storage in computers. Some of the examples of these storage devices include the ff. : the hard disk, floppy disk, RAM, CD ROM, and tape. Furthermore, these storage devices together with hardware component of clock speed play their distinct roles to determine the speed and speed rate of a computer (MSD, 2006).


First, introduced in 1956 and developed during 1973, by the IBM company, the hard disk, or “hard disk drive” as mentioned, is one example of a stable and reliable secondary hardware storage device that efficiently facilitates speed. It functions as some kind of an optimal and purposeful storeroom which saves accumulated and encoded numeric and digital data, and it is also appropriate for running application programs on spinning magnet-plated platters that is performed by execution and command by the user. Hard disk drives were created for personal computer usage.

It has features like audio playing, video gaming, video recording, etc (MSD, 2006). Second, the role of hard disks in determining the speed of a computer is very significant because with the use of hard disk, it can makes the access of files easier and faster as it runs or rotates. The bigger the platters or dishes used by the hard disk to run, the faster its speed and the smaller the platters, the lower the capacity of the computer to run, work, or access files faster. The number of disks in a specific computer may vary at a minimum number of 3 disks to a maximum number of 5 running disks revolving 60 per second.

Most hard disk drives make use of removable cartridges while some do not. Most people create back up from the files they saved from the disk since the recent hard disk is created with such a sensitive feature. It can store data from 20 M up to 40 M (MSD, 2006). Third, a floppy disk coming in two sizes: 5 ? and 3 ? inches, is a detachable or unfixed storage device which is already obsolete. It is secondary as compared to the huge capacity of hard disk when it comes to data storage memory. The uses of floppy disks though, become popular for it is much cheaper than the cost of a hard disk.

Moreover, it is more convenient to carry floppy disks wherever you go and save data for the use of backup purposes. Moreover, floppy disks make use of the delicate, magnetic and bendable disk which is film-like in color and enclosed in a protective plastic shield or case. The roles of floppy disks portray no role in determining the speed of a computer—speed is determined by the Central Processing unit and its memory rather. For practical reasons, hard disks are favored over floppy disks especially when the cost of the first (hard disks) becomes more inexpensive than the latter.

Further, floppy disks are really essentially slower and more sensitive than hard disk that is why it is more prone to damage (MSD, 2006). Fourth, random access memory (RAM) is the primarily appropriate for storage of data that occurs in the computer’s memory and is stored directly at the computer’s Central Processing Unit (CPU). The two types of RAM are the SRAM and the DRAM. SRAM stands for Static RAM and the latter meaning, Dynamic RAM (DRAM). With the use of RAM, user can program the CPU to read, write, and locate data.

The role of RAM is to carry out and execute calculations at high speed which is made possible by the said feature of RAM or computer memory that operates random to locate items or applications in the computer system (MC, 2008). Fifth, with the use of compact disks, the CD-ROM operates and exemplifies the use of read-only memory for sharing and sending applications like music files, games, and other multimedia files and desktop applications. The capacity of CD-ROM when it comes to data storage is up to 650 M.

Recently, CD-ROMs tend to be much cheaper than other storage devices. CD-ROM is appropriate for expansion of one’s personalized computer system. In addition, CD-ROM does not play a role in determining the speed of a computer. In fact, user retrieves data slower than any other available data computer storage device in the market if the computer is not supported by CD-ROM’s “data transfer speed (MSD, 2006). ” Sixth, tape is a thin strip of plastic, magnetic coated device used mainly for recording and it is known to be appropriate for secondary data storage or backup.

Moreover, this tape is most appropriate for the purpose of calculations or “personal computing. ” There is a no role that a tape plays in order to determine speed in a particular computer; further, data access is slower than expected together with its inconvenience for the required retrieval of data in orderly and chronological manner (MSD, 2006). Lastly, clock speed—as measured in megahertz (MHz), is the “speed of the internal clock of microprocessor. ” Clock speed is appropriate for functioning in operation in the internal processing of a computer.

The clock speed plays an important role in determining the speed of a computer and it affects the overall performance of the computer (MSD, 2006). Conclusion Several types of hardware storage devices are invented for data storage in computers: the hard disk, floppy disk, RAM, CD ROM, and tape. All mediums except for the floppy disks, CD-ROM, and tape play a role in determining the speed of a computer. These devices except for the other three are hardware components that determine the speed and performance of a computer.

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