Motherboard Form Factors

Advance Technical Repair of Laptops Motherboard

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Motherboards come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Just as importantly, motherboards have small holes through which you insert screws to attach the motherboard to the computer's case. These holes are often referred to as the mount points of the motherboard. Motherboards also require certain types of connectors for keyboards and other external devices. Finally, motherboards have differing requirements in terms of power supply connectors. Collectively, these characteristics determine the motherboard's form factor. In theory, motherboards of just about any form factor can be designed to use just about any CPU or bus type, although the size requirements of components make certain combinations impractical. In reality, certain combinations don't appear because certain technologies (like 80386 CPUs or the VL-Bus) died out before specific motherboard form factors (like ATX) came into being.

Linux isn't particularly concerned with the motherboard form factor per se, although Linux can work better with some specific models of motherboard than with others. Linux may not have drivers for a video or audio device included on a mini- or micro-ATX motherboard, for instance. Before buying such a motherboard, or a system built around such a board, you should research the chipsets used and consult the appropriate chapters of this book and current Linux driver availability information. If you have cause to use a specific motherboard form factor, you can do so with Linux. You must simply do the research to be sure that the motherboard's included peripherals are supported.

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The Ultimate Computer Repair Guide

The Ultimate Computer Repair Guide

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