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What is CPU its function and types

What is CPU its function and types

If you use a computer or even a cell phone, you may have heard of the CPU before.

 and perhaps at that moment you wondered what this term specifically means, you probably already know that it is the central processing unit and the main component of any computer.

 but you haven't been exposed clearly to how it works or its role among the components of a computer.

Forget about all the questions that might not be on your mind permanently and let's talk about something you definitely faced when you wanted to upgrade your desktop computer or buy a laptop or even a mobile phone.

 when you have found that the CPU is the main element that needs to be Consider it while selecting the appropriate phone or computer for you according to it.

In this article, we explain in a simple way how the Central Processing Unit (CPU) works, what its function is inside the computer and everything you need to know about central processors in general.

What is CPU its function and types

What is a CPU?

The CPU is short for the word Central Processing Unit, or Central Processing Unit in Arabic, and is the main component of what is known as a computer.

But it is not the only component, it represents the brain of the computer, be it a desktop, laptop or mobile computer, and is also present in various domestic devices, especially those dealing with the Internet of Things, such as Smart TVs.

The CPU is a chip that fits into a socket on the main circuit board (motherboard) inside the computer. The CPU is completely separate from the random access memory, or RAM, where information is temporarily stored.

It is also separate from the graphics card or graphics chip (Graphics Processing Unit (GPU), whose job it is to process and play all the video and 3D graphics (like in games) displayed on the screen.

How is the CPU built?

CPUs are built by placing billions of transistors invisible to the naked eye on a single computer chip, also called an integrated circuit.

These transistors enable the calculations needed to run programs stored in system memory and are precise gates that are turned on or off.

And stop or turn on is determined according to two numbers, one and zero, which in case the transmitted value is one, it means it is on, but if the value is zero, it means it is on off.

If you find it difficult to understand the previous sentence, don't worry, because we will clarify it in the next paragraph, and fully understanding it is something that people who are going to major in computer science or information technology need.

As a regular user, you just need to know that ones and zeros are converted in everything you do with the device, whether it's watching videos or writing an email, and the one who does this conversion is your device's CPU .

One of the most popular advancement in CPU manufacturing technology is making those transistors smaller and smaller thus increasing their number which has improved CPU speed for decades, this is often referred to as Moore's Law.

What is the function of the CPU?

Simply put, the CPU receives instructions from a program or application and performs an arithmetic operation. This process is divided into three main phases:

  • going to take
  • decryption
  • implementation

The CPU fetches instructions from RAM, decodes them, and then executes them using the other parts of the CPU.

The instructions performed may include simple arithmetic operations or comparing certain numbers to each other. Since everything in a computer is represented by numbers, these simple tasks are equivalent to what the CPU does.

These processes are what facilitate everything from booting up a basic operating system like Windows to watching a YouTube video.

In modern systems the CPU doesn't do everything, but it still has to supply other parts of the computer (and other activities) with the numbers it needs to function.

For example, you need to tell your GPU to display the bodies of your opponents in a game, or you need to tell your hard drive to move a file to RAM so the system can access it faster.

Important terms for the CPU

In this section we will explain the meanings of some important terms that are always mentioned when talking about control units.

 which it is essential to know in order to understand how the ECUs work, and we will also explain to you how they can be distinguished between their different versions according to their strength, name and other information.


Initially CPUs consisted of a single processing core (called a Core), but now most modern CPUs consist of more than one core which allows them to execute multiple instructions simultaneously, effectively adding many CPUs onto a single slide.

Almost all CPUs sold today are at least dual core, but in the high-end PC category you'll see four (quad) CPUs, even six, eight to go as high as 16 cores and more in some cases.


Some processors also use a technology called multithreading. Imagine a single physical CPU core that can execute two command lines simultaneously with two lines, thus appearing as really two cores in the operating system.

These virtual cores aren't as powerful as physical or existing cores, but they share the same resources and help improve CPU multitasking performance while running compatible programs.

Frequency (clock speed)

Frequency (sometimes called clock speed) is a number that is often focused on when discussing CPU power.

It is measured in gigahertz (GHz) and is written next to the processor speed in product listings.

Frequency refers to how many instructions a CPU can actually process per second, but this isn't the full picture in terms of performance, as clock speed often plays a role when comparing CPUs from the same product family or generation.

When central processor names and versions are similar, a higher frequency means a faster processor, but of course that doesn't mean that a 2010 3GHz processor will be as fast as a 2018 3GHz processor.

This is because each generation or version of processors is stronger than the previous one, because it is based on new technologies added and its manufacturing precision is often lower (measured in nanometers nm).

which leads to features that tip the scales for the new processor like; Less energy consumption, lower temperatures and better and faster interaction with the rest of the computer components.

How to read processor names and understand their symbols

For CPUs manufactured by Intel, each version of the processors is called a generation, such as 8th, 9th, or 10th generation, and so on, and the generation is the number after the dash (-).

You can identify the processor generation by its name, for example, Core i 7-6820 HK is a relatively old chip of the 6th generation, because its number starts with 6, while Core i 5-10210 U is an older chip. of the 10th generation because its number starts with 10.

It's worth noting that Intel divides its processors into categories; The weakest and least number of cores is I3 and the strongest and number of cores is I9.

There are processors less powerful than I3 such as Pentium and Celeron, but they are released in small numbers, and are often dedicated to specific devices, and are no longer aimed at the average user looking to purchase a desktop computer.

The arrangement of processor categories in terms of power goes from weakest to strongest as follows:

  1. Core i3
  2.  Core i5
  3.  Core i7
  4.  Core i9 

This is an example (Core i 5-10210 U) of the shape of the release, and here is an anatomy and explanation of each part of it.

(Core) Refers to the processor brand.

(i5) is the name of the CPU class and indicates the number of cores (the higher the better).

(10) is the generation name (the bigger the number, the better).

The numbers following the generation number (210) often indicate the power of the processor, and the higher it is, the more power it has, but the differences in core frequency between processors belonging to the same generation and category are often smaller.

For example, the Intel® Core™ i 7-6650 U has a base speed of 2.20 GHz while the Intel® Core™ i 7-6660 U processor has a speed of 2.40 GHz. Of course there are other differences but they are minor.

As for the letter (U), or any letter at the end of the version, its meaning is different from one letter to another: the letter U, for example, indicates that this processor is designed to provide the best performance for laptops .

But if this letter is replaced by the letter F, for example, it means that this processor does not contain a GPU and therefore for your computer to work, you need to purchase a separate graphics unit.

There is an Intel-provided guide to the meanings of the letters at the end of the release, which you can view through this link.

AMD is doing something similar with its Ryzen CPUs: the Ryzen 5 2500 X is a second generation chip based on its new "Zen" core design, while the Ryzen 9 3950 X is a third generation CPU.

Where the number 2 in the name of the first processor stands for the second generation and the number 3 in the second processor stands for the third generation.

While the letter X stands for the possibility of overclocking the processor, that is, increasing its frequency by changing some settings on the motherboard.

While almost all processors manufactured by AMD support overclocking, those that contain the letter X in their name have greater overclocking potential and achieve significant performance differences when overclocking.

Types of CPUs and the most important companies that produce them

A desktop computer has a dedicated CPU that performs many of the processing functions for the system, while laptops and some tablets use another system called a System on a Chip (SoC).

It consists of a chip that contains its own CPU along with other components.

Computer CPU manufacturers

As you can see in the processor names section, most of the CPUs are manufactured by Intel and AMD which are the two major companies in the field of manufacturing central processing units for desktop computers and most of the units for laptops.

They also offer CPUs with graphics chips, which can do much more than normal CPU functions.

These units are called APUs by AMD, which stands for Accelerated Processing Unit.

While Intel calls it hybrid central processing unit or hybrid processors.

However, integrated graphics processors with CPUs are often modestly powered, intended for simple tasks like watching movies, and aren't fundamentally reliable as a replacement for a discrete graphics processing unit (GPU).

Mobile CPU manufacturers

The number of companies that produce CPUs for smartphones and mobile phones is higher than the number of their counterparts in the computing world, but we can summarize them in the following list, which includes the most important giants in this field:

  • Apple: Makes chips called Bionic.
  • Qualcomm: its chipset is called Snapdragon.
  • MediaTek: Produce chipsets called Helio.
  • HiSilicon: Produces a chip called Kirin.
  • Samsung: its chipset is called Exynos.

The way smartphone CPUs work is somewhat different from that of a computer.

For example, most older companies manufacture the central processing unit in a way that contains several cores designed for tasks that require simple processing power and another group designed for tasks that require more processing power.

There are other differences, of course, but they are commensurate with each unit's function: it is well known that the central processing unit in phones is not subjected to operations that require enormous processor speed, such as video clip editing and designing of 3D graphics.

Therefore features such as multiple cores and fast speeds that can reach 5GHz in CPUs are not needed by the phone's processor, because it is rarely exposed to these tasks and if it is exposed to it, it will not require the processing power needed by its counterparts on computers.