Computer Hardware

From USB connectors to motherboards, the HowStuffWorks Computer Hardware Channel will help you find explanations, reviews, videos and prices for the parts you need.

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You can find Universal Serial Bus connectors on just about every PC made today. But when it was introduced, USB was leaps and bounds ahead of the technologies it replaced. What makes this standard so useful?

By Marshall Brain

Anyone who owns a computer must at some point ask themselves: "What is cache?". Caching increases the speed at which your computer pulls data from memory. How can a little cache go a really, really long way? Read on to explore how your computer works at such incredible speeds!

By Guy Provost

Ethernet is one of the most common computer-networking components, and the standardization of this technology has created some of the easiest ways to connect a few computers with or without wires.

By Nick Pidgeon


Nearly every desktop computer requires a hard drive for data storage, but what is a hard drive, exactly? Your hard disk drive holds all of the information available on your computer. Take a look inside this incredibly precise storage mechanism!

By Marshall Brain

The microprocessor determines the processing power available for any application you run. Without it, there is no computer. Learn all about this amazing, ever-shrinking technology that makes your computer compute.

By Marshall Brain & Chris Pollette