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Ch. 3 Terms

TermDefinition
Accelerated Processing Unit (APU) An AMD technology that is a combination of a CPU and a graphics processor unit (GPU) in the same processor housing.
ball grid array (BGA) A connection via a processor that is soldered to the motherboard, and the two are always purchased as a unit.
BitLocker Encryption A utility in Windows 8/7/Vista that is used to lock down a hard drive by encrypting the entire Windows volume and any other volume on the drive.
bus The paths, or lines, on the motherboard on which data, instructions, and electrical power move from component to component.
chipset A group of chips on the motherboard that controls the timing and flow of data and instructions to and from the CPU.
CMOS (Complementary Metal-Oxide Semiconductor) The technology used to manufacture microchips. CMOS chips require less electricity, hold data longer after the electricity is turned off, and produce less heat than earlier technologies. The configuration or setup chip is a CMOS chip.
CMOS battery The lithium coin-cell battery on the motherboard used to power the CMOS chip that holds BIOS setup data so that the data is retained when the computer is unplugged.
CMOS RAM The lithium coin-cell battery on the motherboard used to power the CMOS chip that holds BIOS setup data so that the data is retained when the computer is unplugged
Compatibility Support Module (CSM) A feature of UEFI that allows UEFI to be backward compatible with legacy BIOS devices and drivers.
data bus Lines of the bus, a system of pathways used for communication on the motherboard, used for data.
data path size The number of lines on a bus that can hold data, for example, 8, 16, 32, and 64 lines, which can accommodate 8, 16, 32, and 64 bits at a time.
device driver A small program stored on the hard drive and installed in Windows that tells Windows how to communicate with a specific hardware device such as a printer, network, port on the motherboard, or scanner.
EFI (Extensible Firmware Interface) The original version of UEFI that was first developed by Intel.
flashing BIOS The process of upgrading or refreshing the programming stored on a firmware chip.
flip-chip land grid array (FCLGA) A type of socket used by processors that has blunt protruding pins on the socket that connect with lands or pads on the bottom of the processor. The chips in the processor package are flipped over so that the top of the chip makes contact with the socket.
flip-chip pin grid array (FCPGA) A type of socket used by processors that has holes aligned in rows to receive pins on the bottom of the processor. The chips in the processor are flipped over so that the top of the chip makes contact with the socket.
Front Side Bus (FSB) The bus between the CPU and memory on the motherboard. The bus frequency in documentation is called the system speed, such as 400 MHz. Also called the memory bus, Front Side Bus, local bus, or host bus.
gigahertz (GHz) One thousand MHz, or one billion cycles per second. Also see hertz and megahertz.
GUID Partition Table (GPT) One of two methods used to organize partitions on a hard drive. A GPT partitioning system installed on a hard drive can support 128 partitions and is recommended for drives larger than 2 TB.
hertz (Hz) Unit of measurement for frequency, calculated in terms of vibrations, or cycles per second. For example, for 16-bit stereo sound, a frequency of 44,000 Hz is used.
I/O sheild A plate installed on the rear of a computer case that provides holes for I/O ports coming off the motherboard.
ISO image A file format that has an .iso file extension and holds an image of all the data, including the file system that is stored on an optical disc. ISO stands for International Organization for Standardization.
ITX A smaller version of the microATX form factor.
jumper Two small posts or metal pins that stick up side by side on the motherboard or other device and are used to hold configuration information. The jumper is considered closed if a cover is over the wires and open if the cover is missing.
Key-enrollment Key (KEK) A Secure Boot database that holds digital signatures provided by OS manufacturers.
Key-exchange Key (KEK) A Secure Boot database that holds digital signatures provided by OS manufacturers.
land grid array (LGA) A socket that has blunt protruding pins in uniform rows on the socket that connect with lands or pads on the bottom of the processor.
LoJack A technology by Absolute Software used to track the whereabouts of a laptop computer and, if the computer is stolen, lock down access to the computer or erase data on it. The technology is embedded in the UEFI/BIOS of many laptops.
Master Boot Record (MBR) One of two methods used to organize the partition tables on a hard drive. On an MBR hard drive, the first sector on the drive is called the MBR and contains the partition table and a program BIOS uses to boot an OS from the drive.
megahertz (MHz) One million Hz, or one million cycles per second. Also see hertz and gigahertz.
Mini-ITX A smaller version of the microATX form factor.
Mini-PCI The PCI industry standard for desktop computer expansion cards, applied to a much smaller form factor for laptop expansion cards.
Mini-PCI Express (Mini PCIe) A standard used for laptop internal expansion slots that follows the PCI Express standards applied to laptops.
North Bridge That portion of the chipset hub that connects faster I/O buses (for example, the video bus) to the system bus.
onboard port Ports that are directly on the motherboard, such as a built-in keyboard port or onboard network port.
option ROM A Secure Boot driver required as the computer first boots, which is digitally signed and identified in the signature database.
overclocking Running a processor at a higher frequency than is recommended by the manufacturer, which can result in an unstable system, but is a popular thing to do when a computer is used for gaming.
PCI Express (PCIe) The latest evolution of PCI, which is not backward compatible with earlier PCI slots and cards. PCIe slots come in several sizes, including PCIe x1, PCIe x4, PCIe x8, and PCIe x16.
PCI-X The second evolution of PCI, which is backward compatible with conventional PCI slots and cards, except 5-V PCI cards. PCI-X is focused on the server market.
pin grid array (PGA) A socket that has holes aligned in uniform rows around the socket to receive the pins on the bottom of the processor.
Platform Key (PK) A digital signature belonging to the motherboard or computer manufacturer. The PK authorizes turning on or off Secure Boot and updating the KEK database.
protocol A set of rules and standards that two entities use for communication. For example, TCP/IP is a suite or group of protocols that define many types of communication on a TCP/IP network.
QuickPath Interconnect (QPI) The technology used first by the Intel X58 chipset for communication between the chipset and the processor using 16 serial lanes similar to that used by PCI Express. Replaced the 64-bit wide Front Side Bus used by previous chipsets
revoked signature database (bdx) A Secure Boot database that is a blacklist of signatures for software that has been revoked and no longer trusted.
riser card A card that plugs into a motherboard and allows for expansion cards to be mounted parallel to the motherboard. Expansion cards are plugged into slots on the riser card.
secure boot A UEFI feature that prevents a system from booting up with drivers or an OS that are not digitally signed and trusted by the motherboard or computer manufacturer.
signature database (db) A Secure Boot database that holds a list of digital signatures of approved operating systems, applications, and drivers that can be loaded by UEFI.
small form factor (SFF) A motherboard used in low-end computers and home theater systems. Often used with an Intel Atom processor and sometimes purchased as a motherboard-processor combo unit.
South Bridge That portion of the chipset hub that connects slower I/O buses (for example, a PCI bus) to the system bus.
staggered pin grid array A type of socket used by processors that has pins staggered over the socket in order to squeeze more pins into a small space.
system bus The bus between the CPU and memory on the motherboard. The bus frequency in documentation is called the system speed, such as 400 MHz.
system clock A line on a bus that is dedicated to timing the activities of components connected to it. The system clock provides a continuous pulse that other devices use to time themselves.
TPM (Trusted Platform Module) chip A chip on a motherboard that holds an encryption key required at startup to access encrypted data on the hard drive. Windows BitLocker Encryption can use the TPM chip.
trace A wire on a circuit board that connects two components or devices.
Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) A computer, security appliance, network appliance, or Internet appliance that stands between the Internet and a private network and runs firewall, anti-malware, and other software to protect the network.
virtual machine (VM) Software that simulates the hardware of a physical computer, creating one or more logical machines within one physical machine.
virtualization When one physical machine hosts multiple activities that are normally done on multiple machines.
wait state A clock tick in which nothing happens, used to ensure that the microprocessor isn't getting ahead of slower components. A 0-wait state is preferable to a 1-wait state. Too many wait states can slow down a system.
zero insertion force (ZIF) socket A ZIF (zero insertion force) connector uses a lever or latch to prevent force from being used on a sensitive connection.
Created by: drewtang40