If you have problems with your computer performing normal processes, or it seems to work excessively slower than it should, there are unfortunately far too many reasons for why this could be to just blame it on one thing. Many times, computer speed or performance, especially when you are connected to the Internet, is dependent upon a dozen components to work efficiently. In order to understand how to fix or improve your computer, you have to understand how your computer works. One important aspect of computer efficiency is the relationship between hardware and software.
Hardware is the actual physical components of your computer, like your keyboard, mouse, and the monitor. Not only should you understand what these components are, it is also very helpful to know what each part does in relationship to the others. The specifications, or specs, of internal hardware, like your hard drive and RAM, are also helpful to know, as they can help you understand their capacities and capabilities.
Software is the digital data that enables hardware to perform user tasks, like Microsoft Word and Internet Explorer. There are hundreds of software programs and system software (built in commands and controls in your computer) that perform many different tasks—like audio and visual features, or functional features for creating or organizing projects. It’s important to know what software you need to not only be compatible with, but also optimize the efficiency of your hardware. You also need to know what version of your software you have, as an outdated version can severely inhibit your ability to keep up with computer (and especially online) activities.
Here’s how it works:
1. Without hardware, software would not exist. If, for example, there were no modems, there would be no software for the Internet.
2. Without software, hardware would be useless. Everything your computer does, even powering on, is run by some type of software.
3. Hardware and software cannot work together unless it was made to work together. Just like Ford parts won’t make a Chevy work, or trying to use parts from a previous model won’t work with newer cars, most software must be run on a machine that was built for it.
4. Hardware occasionally needs to be upgraded. Most computers today, even the cheapest ones, have hardware that more than a hundred times faster and better than the best and most expensive computers of 10 years ago. Hardware that is too old will not be compatible with new software, or will not be able to keep up and make your computer slower.
5. Software needs to be upgraded. There are constantly newer releases of all kinds of software to make use of the improved capacity and speed of hardware upgrades, as well as to be compatible with other computers and new Internet applications and features. Even with a new computer, outdated software will cause slow performance and could keep you from enjoying modern technological achievements both online and offline.
Understanding the relationship of software and hardware, and knowing which ones you have is the first step in keeping your computer in good shape and running order.
Written by Hannah Miller, Online Marketing Representative and Customer Service, Copper.net.
Copper.net is a nationwide Internet services provider that is all-American owned and operated. Call today, 1-800-336-3318 or sign up online at www.copper.net! Check out my blog for more articles!