Socket 7 is the descriptive term for the way certain Intel Pentium microprocessors plug into a computer motherboard so that it makes contact with the motherboard's built-in wires or data bus. Socket 7 is the best-known of eight connection variations that use the Zero Insertion Force (ZIF) socket. As its name implies, the ZIF socket is designed for ease of manufacture and so that the average computer owner will be able to upgrade the microprocessor. The ZIF socket contains a lever that opens and closes, securing the microprocessor in place. Various sockets have a differing number of pins and pin layout arrangements.
For its Pentium II processor, Intel has moved from the socket configuration to an approach in which the processor is packaged in a cartridge and fits into a slot in the motherboard.
The following table summarizes the socket characteristics for different Intel processors.
|3||237||Inline||486DX,SX,DX2,DX4||3V or 5 V|
|4||273||Inline||60 or 66 MHz Pentium||5 V|
|8||387||Staggered||Pentium Pro||3 V|