By Robert M Rinder

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Disk Drives Disk drives provide a computer with additional memory. The memory chip referred to previously is fast but relatively expensive. It also has the unfortunate failing of losing data every time power is turned off. Disk memory, on the other hand, is relatively cheap, and although much slower than memory chips, it retains data when power is turned off. Disks provide permanent storage of data as long as no magnets or other alien objects destroy it. Thus, disk memory supplements main memory-the name often given to memory composed of chips.

Memory words are 9 bits, with one bit serving as a parity check on the other eight • Various circuits for driving an audio-cassette tape player, a speaker, and the keyboard • A spare socket for another processor, such as a specialized mathematical co-processor, for performing rapid mathematical processing Expansion Expansion is provided by the five expansion slots on the System Board in the System Unit. When you want to add more memory or other functions, you must: • Purchase an Adapter Board, as well as any external unit, such as printer or modem.

The System Unit The System Unit is a 20 x 16 x 6-inch steel cabinet, with provision for housing two 5Y4-inch diskette drives. Connector slots are provided in the rear for connecting displays, cassette recorder, joy sticks, modems, and other optional add-ons. The cover is easily removable from the chassis by anyone with a reasonable amount of mechanical dexterity. The System Unit is the centerpiece of the computer system. All 34 THE IBM PERSONAL COMPUTER MADE EASY units are either inside it or connected to it.

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