103b-al

From CSclasswiki
Jump to: navigation, search

Homework 2

Documenting the demolition lab from Monday, February 7th.

  • By Julianne Roseman

Background

I worked with Signe and we took apart a Dell Optiplex GX620, model L305P_00.


103b al us.jpg

Getting Started

Here is the first picture we took that shows the side cover off the computer.


103b al open.jpg

Power Supply

The power supply is easy to find because it is where many of the wires come from. We found it in the upper right-hand side of the computer next to the CD / DVD rom.


103b al p2.jpg 103b al power.jpg


This power supply could output 305 watts... before the computer got sent to demolition hell. I wonder what the computer did to end up with our class instead of in computer heaven.

CD/DVD Rom

Our computer was equipped with a CD / DVD player that also had writable capabilities.

103b al cd.jpg


It was located in the upper left portion of the computer, where one would expect to find the CD drive.

Motherboard

This is where a lot of things live in the computer. It looks like a board with a bunch of lines like city streets and it takes up the most space in the computer. The lines transmit information, much like wires.


103b al motherboard.jpg


There are some key elements on the motherboard, including the processor, the RAM, and the video card.

Smaller parts on the motherboard, such as the two in the table below, cannot be forgotten.


A small battery keeps track of the time and date like a watch. 103b al batt.jpg
Hiding under a protective metal case, a crystal determines how fast the processor will work. 103b al see.jpg

Processor

The processor executes commands and is central to the functioning of a computer. It is located under the heat sink, which keeps the processor cool.


103b al processor.jpg


The processor in our computer was an Intel Pentium 4.

Video Card

This part of the computer generates the images that are displayed on the screen. It is attached to the back of the computer on the motherboard.


103b al 1.jpg 103b al 2.jpg

Memory

In terms of memory, the hard disk plays a vital role. But a computer also uses RAM, or random access memory. RAM provides fast, short-term memory when the computer is in use. However, RAM does not save information when the computer is turned off.


This computer had two RAM boards, each providing 512 MB of storage or 1 GB. The RAM was made by Samsung.


103b al ram.jpg

Hard Disk

The hard disk is my favorite part of the computer. It was in the bottom left of the computer, hiding in a case that makes it look less exciting than it really is.


103b al boring.jpg 103b al h.jpg


After opening the case, though, you can see that the hard disk looks like a record player with a really shiny circular disk. This one could hold 250 GB of data.


103b al cool.jpg


This short video from YouTube shows a hard disk in action. Watch Me!


Comments on the Lab

This lab was fun and informative. The only bad part was the dust. Not having enough of the right tools to actually take apart the computer was a bit of a pain, but hardly worth really complaining about. I was surprised by how hard you had to pull on some items to get them to separate from their usual resting place and surprised when various people demonstrated tricks that allow the user to easily remove a piece. I enjoyed taking parts of the computer out and seeing how heavy some pieces were because it allowed me to think of how computers and laptops may be designed to weigh less.