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A+ 901 Acronyms

CompTIA A+ 220-901 Hardware Acronyms

AC alternating current - type of electricity you get from the wall - needs to be converted to DC for most electronics
ACPI advanced configuration power interface - lets the OS do things like physically shut down the computer and spin down disks. Replaced older APM standard.
ADSL asymmetrical digital subscriber line - common type of DSL that has more download bandwidth than upload bandwidth
AGP accelerated graphics port - used for faster graphics cards during the era of PCI - now replaced with PCI express
AHCI advanced host controller interface - improved SATA protocol that works faster with SATA hard drives and solid state drives
AP access point - used in wireless networks running in infrastructure mode
APM advanced power management - older method used for the OS to control hardware power options - was replaced with ACPI starting with Vista
ATA advanced technology attachment - another name for IDE connected drives - has been replaced with SATA
ATAPI advanced technology attachment packet interface - developed to allow optical drives to work with ATA (IDE)
ATM asynchronous transfer mode - a packet or "cell" switching technology used on WANs and sometimes LANs
ATX advanced technology extended - Modern motherboard, case, power supply specification
A/V audio video
BIOS basic input/output system
BNC Bayonet-Neil-Concelman or British Naval Connector - used to terminate some coaxial cables used for networking
BTX balanced technology extended - newer specification than ATX - not widely adopted - was designed for better thermal protection
CCFL cold cathode fluorescent lamp - used for backlights on flat panels - smaller and longer lifetimes than standard fluorescent lamps
CD compact disk
CD-ROM compact disk read-only-memory - used to store data on a CD - can not be written to
CD-RW compact disk rewriteable - data can be written to repeatedly
CDFS compact disk file system - a file system used to store data on a CD
CMOS complementary metal-oxide semiconductor - ofen used to store BIOS settings. Will loose data when power is removed until it is backed up with a battery.
CNR communications and networking riser - older small expansion slot used for modems and network adapters
COMx communication port (x=port number) - used on older computers - commonly called the serial port such as COM1
CPU central processing unit - also called the processor or microprocessor
CRT cathode-ray tube - older display technology that used a vacuum tube with a phosphorescent screen and electron guns to display an image
DB-25 serial communications D-shell connector with 25 pins - Used on the original PCs for the COM1 (serial) port
DB-9 serial communications D-shell connector with 9 pins - Used in computers for the COM1 (serial) port. Now replaced with USB.
DC Direct Current - the type of electricity used inside the computer. The power supply converts AC to DC
DDR double data rate
DDR-RAM double data rate random access memory replaced the older SDRAM. Popular between 2001 and 2005 to support Pentium 4
DDR-SDRAM double data rate synchronous dynamic random access memory - same as DDR memory
DIMM dual inline memory module - memory module with different pins on each side
DIN Deutche Industrie Norm - round connector invented in Germany. Used in early PCs for the keyboard (bigger than the later mini-DIN PS/2 connector)
DLT digital linear tape - magnetic tape storage technology developed in the 1980s and extending to the 1990s. Capacity was measured in Gigabytes
DLP digital light processing - uses digital micro-electromechanical technology. Used in many front projection projectors.
DMA direct memory access - a technology which allows input/output devices and expansion cards to copy data directly into RAM without using the CPU. Gives better performance and speed than programmed I/O
DMZ demilitarized zone - area between firewalls for company servers that the public needs to access - also known as the perimeter network
DNS domain name service or server. Used with TCP/IP for name resolution
DRAM dynamic random access memroy - used by almost all motherboard RAM (SDRAM, DDR, DDR2, etc). Made up of capacitors that must be refreshed by the motherboard. High density and less costly but slower than Static RAM
DRM digital rights management - used to protect digital content
DSL digital subscriber line - used to provide internet access from the phone company. Allows voice and data at the same time but only works over a limited distance
DVD digital video disk or digital versatile disk - holds more than CDs but less than BlueRay
DVD-RAM digital video disk random access memory - can be recorded over many times
DVD-ROM digital video disk read only memory - can not be rewritten
DVD-R digital video disk recordable - can be recorded once
DVD-RW digital video disk rewriteable - can be re-recorded
DVI digital visual interface - started to replace VGA about the time flat pannels started to replace CRTs
ECC error correcting code / error checking and correction - used in higher-end computers like servers to keep memory accurate
ECP extened capabilities port - parallel port that is part of the IEEE 1284 standard. ECP mode could use DMA and was bi-directional.
EEPROM electrically erasable programmable read only memory now called flash memory - used to store the BIOS or other firmware
EIDE enhanced integrated drive electronics - enhanced version of IDE used to speed of the data transfer to and from disks
EMI electromagnetic interference - produced by such things as motors, fluorescent lights, etc. Can be a problem with unsheilded twisted pair (UDP) network cable
EMP electromagntic pulse - could destry all our computers and put us back into the stone age!
EPROM eraseable programmable read-only memory. This memory was used to store BIOS before EEPROM and is erased with an ultraviolet lamp
EPP enhanced parallel port - part of the parallel port IEEE 1284 standard - not as powerful as ECP but still bi-directonal
ESD electrostatic discharge - static electricity discharge that can harm processors or memory
EVGA extened video graphics adapter - resolution was 1024 X 768
EVDO evolution data optimized or evolution data only - a 3G standard for CDMA networks
FAT file allocation table used before the NTFS file system
FAT12 12-bit file allocation table - used with floppy disks only
FAT16 16-bit file allocation table - used in early versions of DOS
FAT32 32-bit file allocation table - used starting with Windows 95 Service Release 2 but now replaced with NTFS
FDD floppy disk drive
Fn Function (referring to the function key on a laptop
FPM fast page mode - a type of memory used in old PCs before SDRAM
FRU field replaceable unit - i.e. a power supply
FSB front side bus - the bus between the CPU and RAM
Gb gigabit
GB gigabyte
GDI graphics device interface - a Microsoft Windows application programming interface used to draw shapes on graphics devices. Not as common as DirectX and or OpenGL.
GHz gigahertz
GUI graphical user interface
GPS global positioning system
GSM global system for mobile communications - uses SIM cards
Created by: dlfrech