Computer-hardware is one of the three important elements of a computer system; the other two elements are the Software (these are the programs which contains instructions that tell the computer what to do) and the Peopleware (these are the people who operate and use a computer).

As an essential element, the computer-hardware is the physical parts of a computer system which we, as Peopleware, can actually touch and feel. Simply put, this element is the computer package itself; it is “the computer’s hard devices”. So if one element in the system is missing, the computer will not work.

The computer-hardware has different functions. These can be classified as follows:

1. Input Devices – are used to enter data or give commands to the computer. Some examples are the keyboard, mouse, scanner joystick, trackball and light pen.

2. Output Devices – are used to translate data into a useful and meaningful form. These devices display information on screen, produce printed copies of information or generate sounds. Certain examples are the monitor, printer, speakers and headphones.

There are also types of output:

a. hard copy – the result or information printed on paper

b. soft copy – the result or information displayed on screen

3. Storage Devices – are the fixed or removable media used for retrieving and storing data or information for future use. Some examples are the floppy disk, hard disk, compact disc or CD, digital video disc or DVD, USB (Universal Serial Bus) flash drive and Zip drive.

Other hardware devices are called peripherals (any piece of hardware attached to a computer. It can be any input, output or storage devices that are connected externally or internally to the computer’s CPU (Central Processing Unit) like CD or DVD-ROM (Read Only Memory) drive, webcam, modem, network adapters, network cables, hubs, phone cables and others.

Here are some of the many ways to maintain computer-hardware devices in top shape:

  1. Keep all liquids and food items away from the computer area. This is for the safety of both the users and the computer itself.
  2. Keep fingers off the computer monitor’s screen to keep from damaging it, most especially on LCD (liquid crystal display) monitors and the like.
  3. Keep all magnets away from the computer and disks for it may damage the data that are stored on the disks.
  4. Take precaution in using certain chemicals in cleaning the computer parts.
  5. Most of these devices require electric power for operation; comply with the standard operating and installing procedures in the manuals included with each device to avoid risks and accidents.
  6. All computer-hardware devices are fragile and important so observe care in handling always.

With all these basics at hand, discerning the computer’s hardware and its devices from one another with all its functions and proper use, anyone can become a “techie” (a person who is very knowledgeable or enthusiastic about technology and especially high technology).


Guest Author Jeff is a free lancer writer and content builder of

By Techwacky

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