Browse Definitions :
Definition

motherboard

A motherboard is the main printed circuit board (PCB) in a computer. The motherboard is a computer’s central communications backbone connectivity point, through which all components and external peripherals connect.

The large PCB of a motherboard may include 6-14 layers of fiberglass, copper connecting traces and copper planes for power and signal isolation. Additional components can be added to a motherboard through its expansion slots. These may include processor sockets, DIMM, HTX, PCI, PCIe and M.2 slots as well as power supply connections. Typically motherboards offer additional connectivity through a Southbridge chip such as PCI, SATA, Thunderbolt, USB and more. CPU to RAM and PCIe are generally connected through point-to-point interconnects such as hypertransport (HT), quick path interconnect (QPI) or Ultrapath interconnect (UPI). Often, choosing a motherboard determines many of the features a desktop will have.

The most common motherboard design in desktop computers today is ATX, an Intel improvement on the AT design by IBM. Other form factors include extended ATX mini-ATX, microATX, BTX, microBTX mini ITX, micro ITX and nano ITX.

The integration of components has eliminated the Northbridge chips that managed memory from motherboards. With the advent of memory controllers built into CPU, integrated video too has moved from motherboard to CPU. On AMD’s new Ryzen, even the Southbridge is optional due to the SOC (system on a chip) nature of the CPU. This integration into the CPU reduces the cost for motherboard manufacturers who wish to offer base systems for workstations and entry level computers while also enabling highly customized implementations that support a range of processors to allow for platform upgradabillity.

This was last updated in December 2016

Continue Reading About motherboard

SearchCompliance
  • risk reporting

    Risk reporting is a method of identifying risks tied to or potentially impacting an organization's business processes.

  • risk profile

    A risk profile is a quantitative analysis of the types of threats an organization, asset, project or individual faces.

  • risk appetite

    Risk appetite is the amount of risk an organization is willing to take in pursuit of objectives it deems have value.

SearchSecurity
SearchHealthIT
SearchDisasterRecovery
  • What is risk mitigation?

    Risk mitigation is a strategy to prepare for and lessen the effects of threats faced by a business.

  • fault-tolerant

    Fault-tolerant technology is a capability of a computer system, electronic system or network to deliver uninterrupted service, ...

  • synchronous replication

    Synchronous replication is the process of copying data over a storage area network, local area network or wide area network so ...

SearchStorage
  • cloud archive

    A cloud archive is storage as a service for long-term data retention.

  • cache

    A cache -- pronounced CASH -- is hardware or software that is used to store something, usually data, temporarily in a computing ...

  • archive

    An archive is a collection of data moved to a repository for long-term retention, to keep separate for compliance reasons or for ...

Close