Classification of Computers

A computer is a virtual digital machine that may be programmed to perform sequences of mathematics or logical operations automatically. Modern computer systems can carry out general units of operations called applications. These applications allow computer systems to carry out a huge variety of tasks.

The computers are broadly classified into four categories on the basis of their size and type:


Microcomputers are small, low-cost, single-user digital computers and also the least powerful. These computers are also called portable computers. It includes CPU, input/output unit, storage unit, and software. Microcomputers include desktop computers, notebooks or laptops, smartphones, tablets, etc.   

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Source: Google Image


Minicomputers are smaller in size, and faster. These computers came into the market in the mid-1960s. These types of computers are generally used in multi-user systems. They have high processing speed and high storage capacity than microcomputers. Their speeds are rated between one and fifty million instructions per second (MIPS). These computers can support 4-200 users simultaneously. IBM-17, PDP-11, and HP 9000 are some of the widely used microcomputers.

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Also Read: Abbreviations Of Computer Related Words

Mainframe Computers:

These computers are multi-user, multi-programming, high performance, and have a very high speed, and large storage capacity. Mainframe computers are the backbone of the entire business world. It can handle the workload of many users. IBM-370, IBM ES000 series, UNIVAC- 1110, etc. are examples of mainframe computers.

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mainframe computers


Supercomputers are the fastest and the most expensive computers. They have a high processing speed compared to other computers. The actual performance of a supercomputer is measured in FLOPS instead of MIPS. Supercomputers play an important role in the field of weather forecasting, climate research, nuclear research, molecular modeling, aircraft design, and oil, and gas exploration. IBM Blue gene and Intel ASCI red, IBM Roadrunner, and PARAM are some examples of supercomputers.

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