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Last modified: Thursday, July 14, 2005 

The main circuit board of a microcomputer. The motherboard contains the connectors for attaching additional boards. Typically, the motherboard contains the CPU, BIOS, memory, mass storage interfaces, serial and parallel ports, expansion slots, and all the controllers required to control standard peripheral devices, such as the display screen, keyboard, and disk drive. Collectively, all these chips that reside on the motherboard are known as the motherboard's chipset.

On most PCs, it is possible to add memory chips directly to the motherboard. You may also be able to upgrade to a faster PC by replacing the CPU chip. To add additional core features, you may need to replace the motherboard entirely.

Motherboard is sometimes abbreviated as mobo.

Also see From AT to BTX: Motherboard Form Factors  in Webopedia's "Did You Know...?" section.

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For pages about motherboard . Also check out the following links!

Related Links

Guide to choosing a motherboard 
This sites hosts an extensive collection of information on motherboards. Geared towards the motherboard purchaser, this site provides introductory information, as well as links to various motherboard product pages and manufacturer home pages.

PC Circuit Board Overview 
Outlines the features and components of the main PC circuit board, including bus standards, chipsets and connectivity. Includes graphics, diagrams and an integrated glossary. This page is from "The PC Technology Guide."

PC Mechanic - online guide to computer hardware 
Contains overviews, purchasing and installation information for PC motherboards, memory, drives, expansion cards, and power supplies. Also contains links to companies and manufacturers and PC hardware related links.

Processor Sockets and Slots 
Describes socket and slot standards and other issues related to mating processors to the system motherboard. This page is from "The PC Guide."

Your PC's Second Most Important Silicon: The Chipset 
If the CPU is the brain of a personal computer, the motherboard is its nervous system.

FAQ on the IEEE 1284 standard for parallel ports
Provides answers to common questions and misunderstandings regarding the new Extended Capabilities Port (ECP), and the Enhanced Parallel Port (EPP) standards and usage.

Motherboard form factors
Describes the various form factors for PC motherboards, with separate sections on the Baby-AT, ATX, and LPX form factors. This page is from "The PC Guide".

Motherboard Integrated Components
Describes several motherboard components, such as sockets, connectors, regulators, capacitors, chips, pins, battery, and jumpers. This page is from "The PC Guide".

Parts of the motherboard
Describes some of the components on motherboards, such as I/O cables and connectors, floppy drive cables, and ATA/IDE cables. This page is from "The PC Guide".

PC hardware product ratings surveys
Contains survey results for several hardware products including modems, motherboards, and monitors .Included are complete survey details and a Top 10 product list.

PC motherboard and system device reference
Comprehensive motherboard reference, covering all the major motherboard components. Looks at the physical motherboard, chipset, system buses, system cache, system resources, and the system BIOS.

Troubleshooting the Motherboard and System Devices
Focuses on problems related to the motherboard and system devices, including the components of the motherboard, along with system devices such as the cache and I/O buses, the BIOS and CMOS memory, system resources, and features such as Plug and Play. This page is from "The PC Guide."

Yahoo!'s motherboard companies page
Yahoo!'s directory of motherboard companies.

Yahoo!'s motherboards page
Yahoo!'s directory of motherboards.

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related categories



related terms

accelerator board











expansion board

expansion slot

frame buffer

heat sink





oscillator clock



printed circuit board


voltage regulator

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