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Hardware definitions

Posted on 2000-05-10
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Last Modified: 2010-04-27
Very simple question for someone who knows..

Please give a brief definition of and differentiate among the following:

mainframe
midrange
mini-system
mini-computer
desktop computer
server
workstation
thin client
Windows terminal

I think I've figured it out but I would like confirmation.  Thanks!
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Question by:leekk
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by:dbrunton
ID: 2801733
mainframe                  fills floor of building
midrange                    fills room of building
mini-system                fills corner of room of building
mini-computer             fits under table of room of building
desktop computer       fits on top of table of room of building
server                         a fancy term for waiter
workstation                       << my computer >>
thin client                     when the waiter doesn't turn up
Windows terminal       the messages that Windows puts up on the screen such as "This application has performed an illegal operation"
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n_lamoont earned 50 total points
ID: 2905070
mainframe
an extremely large and powerful computer system that tends to be the home of all the computing power.  Dumb terminals can then connenct the mainframe and use a small amount of resources on the mainframe.  Some companies even used to give users virtual money, so that every resource was "paid for" by the user.  This was used to make the user aware of what an expensive resource they were using.

midrange really can't help you with this one...

mini-system Sorry but i only ever heard of hifi being referred to in this way!

mini-computer
I was told that this is a halfway house between the the workstation and the mainframe but intended to be used in a less thin client area.

desktop computer
Generally speaking the machine that sits on most peoples desktops.

server
This little beasty is part of the client / server network. A central powerful computer that enables the sharing of resources between many users e.g. data and printers can be all accessed from the server.  They can also provide security measures i.e. in Domanins.

workstation

I normally think of these as being a high powered desktop used by engineers, CAD/CAM, Scientists for modelling.  Tend to be high spec formula one type machines that can crunch numbers very nicely.

thin client
This connects to a server or a mainframe
 the client may consist only of a keyboard, a monitor and a mouse, and a very basic system box that enables all the tranmitting of data to be carried out.  Eg Citrix is an example of an environment that uses thin clients.  

Windows terminal

I'll assume that this is a specific type of thin client i.e. for attaching to a terminal server or maybe an  X machine running un*x or similiar that gives the user a Gui to work with.

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by:leekk
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by:drcspy
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huh........homework
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