Part of the Hardware glossary:

A motherboard is the physical arrangement in a computer that contains the computer's basic circuitry and components. On the typical motherboard, the circuitry is imprinted or affixed to the surface of a firm planar surface and usually manufactured in a single step. The most common motherboard design in desktop computers today is the AT, based on the IBM AT motherboard. A more recent motherboard specification, ATX, improves on the AT design. In both the AT and ATX designs, the computer components included in the motherboard are:

  • The microprocessor
  • (Optionally) coprocessors
  • Memory
  • basic input/output system (BIOS)
  • Expansion slot
  • Interconnecting circuitry

Additional components can be added to a motherboard through its expansion slot. The electronic interface between the motherboard and the smaller boards or cards in the expansion slots is called the bus.

This was last updated in May 2006
Posted by: Margaret Rouse

Related Terms

Definitions

  • flash storage

    - Flash storage, based on flash memory, is used for data repositories, storage systems and consumer devices, such as USB drives, smartphones and solid-state drives. Flash-based storage is faster than... (WhatIs.com)

  • mesh network topology (mesh network)

    - A mesh network is a local area network (LAN) that employs one of two connection arrangements, full mesh topology or partial mesh topology. (SearchNetworking.com)

  • Trusted Platform Module (TPM)

    - A Trusted Platform Module (TPM) is a specialized chip on an endpoint device that stores RSA encryption keys specific to the host system for hardware authentication. (WhatIs.com)

Glossaries

  • Hardware

    - Terms related to computer hardware, including definitions about cables, connectors and power supply units and words and phrases about computing peripheral devices including the keyboard, mouse, au...

  • Internet applications

    - This WhatIs.com glossary contains terms related to Internet applications, including definitions about Software as a Service (SaaS) delivery models and words and phrases about web sites, e-commerce ...

Ask a Question. Find an Answer.Powered by ITKnowledgeExchange.com

Ask An IT Question

Get answers from your peers on your most technical challenges

Ask Question

Tech TalkComment

Share
Comments

    Results

    Contribute to the conversation

    All fields are required. Comments will appear at the bottom of the article.