How Motherboards Work

Given its name – the motherboard – you have probably already guessed that it is an essential component within any computer. The motherboard works to tie together every device within the computer itself – such as sound cards and graphics processors – and ensures that these devices remain powered and are communicating with each other.

Knowing what it does and how it does it are two distinct things, though. It is a computer component which has massively advanced throughout the last two decades and modern motherboards come with a wide variety of uses, features and functions.

Read on to learn more about the role which motherboards play. To read more about motherboards in general check out Hardware Secrets.

#1: It Organizes Your Devices and Provides Support to Peripherals

The motherboard helps connect all your computer’s essential internal and external devices. You can think of a motherboard as your computer’s ‘supervisor’ helping to organize your machine and ensure everything is working properly.

The motherboard also provides support to your computer’s peripherals by managing the communications between the end-user and the computer’s peripherals. Your peripherals are devices such as printers, scanners, projectors and the mouse – essentially anything which extracts data from the computer or feeds data in.

#2: It Determines the System’s Performance

The motherboard plays a significant role in your system’s overall performance. Because the motherboard determines what type of devices and components you can use on your computer, it prevents you from using stuff which is way outside of your computer’s capabilities.

This includes graphics processing units, processors, memory and pretty much any other computer hardware. It also defines your system’s processors in addition to all of this.

In this way, the motherboard acts as a regulator for your computer and prevents you from overloading it, which can cause long-term damage and fry its components!

#3: It Handles Any Expansions

The motherboard has expansion slots which are hardwired into it and these can be used to add additional components and hardware to your computer. Depending on the age of your motherboard or model of computer, the number and sorts of expansion slots will vary, and this can dictate what can be added to your computer.

For instance, if you have picked up a device which requires USB 3.0 or Thunderbolt slots, you need to ensure that your motherboard is able to support this connection. A work around this is to buy an expansion card which is added to the motherboard, but these are often much poorer in quality and you will never get the full performance capabilities by doing this; direct integration is always the way to go with a motherboard.

The motherboard is an essential component of any desktop computer and is the ‘mother’ of your computer, keeping everything running smoothly, communicating with each other and ensuring your system performs at its optimum. It is a piece of hardware which has evolved massively over the decades. Today, modern motherboards have a lot of extra bells and whistles attached to them – they are very different to what they once were.