Overview of Computer System Unit Parts

Updated on February 6, 2019
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Patrick, a computer technician, is a dedicated writer who wishes to make the world better by informing individuals who seek more knowledge.

The Computer System Unit

The system unit is the box-like case that contains the electronic components of a computer. Many people erroneously refer to this as the CPU. Here you will find devices like the power supply, different drives, the fan, the connectors, and the motherboard. Note that in most cases, the monitor, keyboard, and mouse will not be found inside the system unit layout.

Other names for the system unit include the computer chassis, cabinet, box, tower, enclosure, housing, or simply case.

Parts of the Unit

These are some of the major components you are going to find inside your system unit. If you are thinking of checking some of these parts out, make sure your computer is powered off and disconnected from a power source. Be careful not to mess with your components if you are not very familiar with them. Before touching anything, be aware of the ESD precautions.

A Computer Base Unit

Computer System Unit
Computer System Unit | Source

The Motherboard

The motherboard is sometimes called the system board or main board. It is the main circuit board of a microcomputer. This component contains the connectors for attaching additional boards. All other parts connect in one way or another to the motherboard.

This part typically 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, keyboard, mouse, and disk drive.

When you are reading about motherboards, you won't fail to come across the term motherboard form factors, which describes the general shape, the type of case, and the power supply it can use. It also describes the physical organization of the motherboard.

A Labeled Motherboard
A Labeled Motherboard | Source

Hard Disk Drive

A hard disk drive is a high capacity, non-volatile, magnetic data storage device with a volume (disk) that is usually non-removable.

Data is magnetically read and written on the platter by read/write heads that float on a cushion of air above the platters.

Hard Disk Drive
Hard Disk Drive | Source

Floppy Disk Drive

This is a disk drive that can read and write floppy disks, although they are obsolete nowadays.

These drives have been replaced by the USB flash disk drives in modern machines.

Diskette Drive
Diskette Drive | Source

Power Supply Unit

The power supply unit (PSU) is used to convert AC currents from the main supply to the different DC voltages required by various computer components.

Power supplies are quoted as having a certain power output specified in watts, A standard power supply would typically be able to deliver around 350 watts.

You will need more power from the power supply if your PC has more operating components.

Power Supply Unit
Power Supply Unit | Source

CD-ROM Drive

This is a high capacity optical data storage device with a removable disk. It writes data onto or reads data from a storage medium.

A CD-ROM drive may be connected to the computer via an IDE (ATA), SCSI, S-ATA, Firewire, or USB interface or a proprietary interface.

A CD Rom Drive
A CD Rom Drive | Source

How to Identify the Components Inside Your Computer

Your Opinion

Have you ever opened a desktop computer system unit?

See results

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

Questions & Answers

  • Are the parts described in this articles those you see inside the system unit?

    That is very true. In this article, we are having an overview of the different components or parts of the system unit. The system unit is the box-like case that contains the electronic components of a computer. Many people erroneously refer to this as the CPU. Here you will find devices like the power supply, different drives, the fan, the connectors, and the motherboard.

  • What are the parts of a computer system unit?

    These are the major components that you will find when you open the computer system unit. Note that the computer system unit is the box-like structure that people erroneously refer to as the CPU. Inside the system unit, expect to find; the motherboard, hard disk drive(s), optical drive(s), power supply unit, and in some old systems fan and floppy disk drive.

© 2010 Patrick Kamau

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    • profile image

      Char 

      13 days ago

      What are the reasons when computer screen is black and won’t open or respond?

    • profile image

      Olaoluwa BleezPrint 

      3 months ago

      Exceptionality is here. So love it!!!

    • profile image

      Usman Bara'u Yanmota 

      5 months ago

      This piece has really been very helpful to me and my students. Thank you so much.

    • profile image

      dante gulapa 

      5 months ago

      lets all danceEEEE

    • profile image

      jjajjangmyeon 

      5 months ago

      nice profile lol

      thankyou

    • profile image

      dick face 

      6 months ago

      i dont careeeeeeeeeeee

    • Patkay profile imageAUTHOR

      Patrick Kamau 

      8 months ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      Thanks, Mr. Yussif you are much welcome. Keep reading to get more knowledge. All the best in your endeavors.

    • profile image

      Yussif Yakubu Suhuyini Tace 

      8 months ago

      Sincerely greatful brother. May god bless you knowledge. Thanks!

    • profile image

      adam 

      9 months ago

      good job thank you guys

    • profile image

      Stephen 

      10 months ago

      Nice piece. Thank you

    • profile image

      Elinam 

      10 months ago

      Thank you it really helpful

    • profile image

      Cyrus 

      10 months ago

      Thanks:)

    • Patkay profile imageAUTHOR

      Patrick Kamau 

      11 months ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      You are the people who keep us going Adam Abdul Fatawu. Thanks a lot.

    • profile image

      Adam Abdul Fatawu 

      11 months ago

      Thanks so much. It really helped me out... Much appreciation for your service

    • profile image

      me 

      11 months ago

      thanks ;)

    • profile image

      axaiben 

      13 months ago

      can you give the important parts of a system unit?

    • profile image

      yanna 

      14 months ago

      can you please give us some information about parts of computer system

    • profile image

      Muzdha 

      14 months ago

      Can you give me all the information about system unit not a little bit

    • profile image

      Can 

      16 months ago

      Can you give me all the parts of the system unit and not some?

    • profile image

      16 months ago

      Thanks this was helpful but I want to ask questions. How do I do it

    • profile image

      isaac wetosi 

      16 months ago

      nice presentation

    • profile image

      John Dave 

      17 months ago

      Thank you for these information this is very helpful for my study in Philippine and I'm Filipino

    • profile image

      rudzani frans lukhele 

      19 months ago

      thanks guys i got the answer now

    • profile image

      bahog bisong 

      20 months ago

      very helpful sir.. thank you for posting these..

    • Patkay profile imageAUTHOR

      Patrick Kamau 

      21 months ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      Thanks, Bofa Deez for visiting and reading this tutorial. I am happy that you found it useful.

    • profile image

      Bofa Deez 

      21 months ago

      I found this article very helpful thank you

    • Patkay profile imageAUTHOR

      Patrick Kamau 

      22 months ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      Thanks, shelly, I am glad you learnt something from this article.

    • profile image

      shelly 

      22 months ago

      this was helpful thank you

    • profile image

      imee zuasola 

      2 years ago

      thank you for posting the parts of the system unit!!!!

    • Patkay profile imageAUTHOR

      Patrick Kamau 

      2 years ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      Thank you Ziel for the visit and comment. I am happy that you have found the content of this hub useful. Keep reading!

    • Patkay profile imageAUTHOR

      Patrick Kamau 

      7 years ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      eunice, you are welcome. Thanks for reading and commenting.

    • profile image

      eunice 

      7 years ago

      thaks for the knowledge

    • Patkay profile imageAUTHOR

      Patrick Kamau 

      7 years ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      Thanks Mohamed Dhidha. I like enlightening people about computers. There is a lot to learn from the computer world.

    • profile image

      Mohamed Dhidha 

      7 years ago

      The information was presented in a very good format, very interesting and very helpful. Thank you so much.

    • Patkay profile imageAUTHOR

      Patrick Kamau 

      7 years ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      You are welcome chrysann Evans. It my pleasure to find that you are contented by what I am offering here.

    • profile image

      chrysann Evans 

      7 years ago

      thanks for your help

    • Patkay profile imageAUTHOR

      Patrick Kamau 

      7 years ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      Thanks Abrabanj, for going through this useful information. There is a lot to learn in the computer world.

    • profile image

      Abrabanj 

      7 years ago

      A nice and very good expression system unit

    • Patkay profile imageAUTHOR

      Patrick Kamau 

      7 years ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      Thanks AMUZU for reading and commenting.

    • profile image

      AMUZU 

      7 years ago

      well done

    • Patkay profile imageAUTHOR

      Patrick Kamau 

      7 years ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      Thank you stasheen brown for dropping by, check more of my hubs for a lot of helpful information.

    • profile image

      stasheen brown 

      7 years ago

      thank you for all the information. very helpful :)

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