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Computer Peripherals

May 16, 2008  |  Difficulty: Easy

A peripheral is a piece of computer hardware that is added to a host computer to increase its capabilities. These devices are hooked to the computer using external ports, like USB connections. 

Some computer peripherals are required to perform basic computing functions, like the monitor, keyboard, mouse, and printer.  Other basic peripherals that home office or business users may attach include fax machines and scanners.

Optional hardware, such as a joystick, tape drive, webcam, or microphone, would also be considered a computer peripheral.  These types of devices are hooked up only if the computer has a specific need for them.  Such devices are not required for the basic operation of the computer.

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