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(computer science)
A common pathway over which information is transmitted between the hardware devices (the central processing unit, memory, and each of the peripheral control units) in a microcomputer.


(mobo) The main printed circuit board in an electronic device, particularly a computer, which may contain sockets that accept additional boards ("daughter-boards").

In a personal computer, the motherboard contains the bus, the microprocessor, and integrated circuits used for controlling any built-in peripherals such as the keyboard, text and graphics display, serial ports and parallel ports, joystick, and mouse interfaces.


Also called the "system board," "main board" "base board" or "logic board," it is the primary printed circuit board in a computer or other electronic device. In a modern desktop computer, the motherboard contains the CPU and RAM sockets as well as the chipset, which houses the control circuits for all the peripheral devices (drives, keyboard, mouse, etc.). A motherboard typically also has a PCI-Express slot for a high-end graphics card and PCI slots for additional peripherals. Laptop motherboards do not have expansion slots for more peripherals.

Wanna Sound Cool?
Every now and then, say "mobo" instead of motherboard, and you will be a "cool geek." See CPU, chipset, PCI Express, PCI and controller.

PC Motherboard
This earlier Baby AT style motherboard required plug-in expansion cards for almost all the peripheral devices. The ISA slots are long gone, and the AGP slot was replaced with PCI-Express.

Expansion Cards
On earlier PCs, expansion cards were required for almost all peripheral devices except keyboard and mouse. Today, enthusiasts may plug in a faster graphics card, but most peripheral control circuits are already on the motherboard.

The Mother of All Motherboards
This is the front and back of the prototype of the first IBM PC motherboard in 1981. The chips are wired together on a "breadboard." (Images courtesy of IBM.) See breadboard.

The Mother of All Motherboards
This is the front and back of the prototype of the first IBM PC motherboard in 1981. The chips are wired together on a "breadboard." (Images courtesy of IBM.) See breadboard.
References in periodicals archive ?
Mainboard bundles, workstations, and rack-mount development kits can be ordered with single or dual IBM POWER9 CPUs.
Since then, several companies have got listed on them and some have even shifted to the mainboard.
Newly added Hardware Temperature Overview shows users the real-time temperature of four of the most prominent hardware components: mainboard, CPU, graphic card and hard drive.
The mainboard consist from the input connector for the glucose measuring electrodes and uses amperometric measuring method.
MSI's Z77 series mainboard uses Military Class III components, which have passed 7 rigorous tests meeting MIL-STD-810G standards as tested by third party laboratories.
The resulting control program can then be downloaded to the device by way of a USB connection to the mainboard.
17 June 2011 - Four companies have been admitted to list on the mainboard or the Oslo Axess marketplace of the Oslo Stock Exchange (OSE), the bourse said on Wednesday.
SGX welcomed 39 new IPOs in 2010, raising S$11 billion (US$8.6 billion) and expanding the market capitalisation on its SGX Mainboard and Catalist small business platform by S$51 billion (US$40 billion).
Compare the image of the PCB connected to the bomb (top) to an image of a spare part 6120c mainboard (bottom).
Singapore-listed Fortune Real Estate Investment Trust (SIN:F25U) said it plans to list on the mainboard of the Hong Kong stock exchange on April 20.
The mainboard IPO still needs the Hong Kong Stock Exchange's approval, the bank added.
COMPUTEX, Taipei, June 4, 2009 - (ACN Newswire) - World-renowned mainboard and graphics card manufacturer, MSI, will be introducing various new products and technologies during Computex 2009.