Easy-to-follow video tutorials help you learn software, creative, and business skills.Become a member

Understanding computer ports

From: Computer Literacy for Windows

Video: Understanding computer ports

Even though you can accomplish many common tasks with your PC with just what comes in the box, meaning the computer itself, the keyboard and the mouse, you'll most likely need to attach and use peripheral devices such as printers, scanners, digital cameras, projectors, the list goes on and on. So in this chapter, we're going to look at how to set up and install common peripherals, but first in this movie I want to make sure you're familiar with the common ports on PCs into which you'll be plugging your devices. The most common port in use for peripherals right now is USB. All computers, Macs and PCs, alike have USB ports.

Understanding computer ports

Even though you can accomplish many common tasks with your PC with just what comes in the box, meaning the computer itself, the keyboard and the mouse, you'll most likely need to attach and use peripheral devices such as printers, scanners, digital cameras, projectors, the list goes on and on. So in this chapter, we're going to look at how to set up and install common peripherals, but first in this movie I want to make sure you're familiar with the common ports on PCs into which you'll be plugging your devices. The most common port in use for peripherals right now is USB. All computers, Macs and PCs, alike have USB ports.

And as you can see they are sort of a flat rectangular port with what looks like a small plastic tab inside. And of course you plug USB cables into your USB ports. This is what the end of the USB cable that plugs into your USB port looks like. Now, the other end of the USB cable can vary in appearance. It could look like this or this or even this. The other end of the cable might even just be the device you're plugging in like a mouse or keyboard, but as long as the cable plugs into your computer's USB port, it's considered a USB cable. Now another important connector you'll find on a PC is an Ethernet port.

This is the port that lets you connect to your network or Internet service. It looks like a wide telephone jack. The cable that plugs into your Ethernet port looks like this and both ends of this cable are the same. One end goes into your computer and the other end goes into your router or modem. In an upcoming chapter, we'll talk about how to set up your computer to connect to your router or to the Internet, but for now that's how you set up the physical connection. Just plug one end of your Ethernet cable into the computer and plug the other end into your router or modem. Other ports you'll probably be using are the audio input and output jacks.

You can plug speakers into the output jack so you can hear any sounds your computer is making through them, including alert sounds or the music you're playing, and if you're recording audio, one option for doing so is to send the audio into the input jack. Now in most PCs, the audio input jack is blue and the output jack is green. You might also have a microphone input jack, which is often pink. But in almost all cases, you'll have labels on your PC telling you which is which. Lastly, all desktop PCs and many laptops have monitor connectors for connecting external monitors to your computer. Desktop PCs, which don't have built-in displays, require a monitor so you can see what you're doing.

And even the laptops do have built-in monitors, it can be nice to plug in a larger external monitors to use as your main screen when you're not traveling with your laptop. Monitors connect the laptops and desktops with either DVI connectors, which look like this, or the older VGA style connectors, which look like this. So that's a rundown of the most important ports you'll need to be familiar with in order to plug in and use peripherals with your PC.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Computer Literacy for Windows
Computer Literacy for Windows

55 video lessons · 19336 viewers

Garrick Chow
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 2m 44s
    1. Welcome
      1m 9s
    2. Using the assessment files
      1m 2s
    3. Using the exercise files
      33s
  2. 9m 53s
    1. What's a computer?
      1m 48s
    2. What's inside a computer?
      2m 46s
    3. Laptop vs. desktop computers
      1m 52s
    4. Special considerations when using a laptop
      3m 27s
  3. 17m 29s
    1. Understanding the operating system
      3m 3s
    2. Understanding files, folders, and directories
      4m 38s
    3. Understanding your Home (User) folder
      3m 9s
    4. Using your desktop
      2m 46s
    5. Taking out the trash (recycle bin)
      1m 45s
    6. The right click
      2m 8s
  4. 25m 38s
    1. Understanding applications
      4m 36s
    2. Opening and saving files
      4m 3s
    3. Choosing the right tool
      4m 37s
    4. How to learn any application
      4m 53s
    5. Five things that work in all applications
      7m 29s
  5. 35m 26s
    1. Understanding computer ports
      2m 33s
    2. Setting up a printer
      3m 36s
    3. Printing your documents
      3m 52s
    4. Setting up a scanner
      2m 8s
    5. Scanning a document
      5m 59s
    6. Setting up a projector or a second monitor
      6m 17s
    7. Using a projector
      3m 43s
    8. Portable storage devices
      3m 55s
    9. Pairing with Bluetooth devices
      3m 23s
  6. 20m 46s
    1. Understanding networks and internet access
      2m 58s
    2. Connecting to wired networks
      2m 47s
    3. Connecting to wireless networks
      5m 0s
    4. Working in a networked environment
      5m 49s
    5. Staying protected from viruses
      4m 12s
  7. 23m 24s
    1. Understanding email servers and clients
      2m 11s
    2. Setting up your email application
      4m 15s
    3. Receiving and reading email
      3m 50s
    4. Composing new email messages
      7m 4s
    5. Reply vs. Reply All
      2m 12s
    6. Dealing with spam
      3m 52s
  8. 8m 22s
    1. Understanding search engines
      1m 24s
    2. Conducting basic searches
      3m 44s
    3. Conducting advanced searches
      3m 14s
  9. 27m 15s
    1. Introduction to word processors
      4m 46s
    2. Formatting text
      7m 57s
    3. Introduction to spreadsheets
      4m 0s
    4. Creating a simple data table
      8m 13s
    5. Formatting a data table
      2m 19s
  10. 28m 52s
    1. Importing images from a digital camera
      7m 57s
    2. Storing and organizing digital images
      4m 28s
    3. Basic image manipulation
      9m 17s
    4. Tagging images
      4m 56s
    5. Sharing images
      2m 14s
  11. 12m 46s
    1. Common obstacles in sharing files
      1m 37s
    2. Creating PDFs for document sharing
      6m 4s
    3. Compressing files
      5m 5s
  12. 1m 4s
    1. Goodbye
      1m 4s

Start learning today

Get unlimited access to all courses for just $25/month.

Become a member
Sometimes @lynda teaches me how to use a program and sometimes Lynda.com changes my life forever. @JosefShutter
@lynda lynda.com is an absolute life saver when it comes to learning todays software. Definitely recommend it! #higherlearning @Michael_Caraway
@lynda The best thing online! Your database of courses is great! To the mark and very helpful. Thanks! @ru22more
Got to create something yesterday I never thought I could do. #thanks @lynda @Ngventurella
I really do love @lynda as a learning platform. Never stop learning and developing, it’s probably our greatest gift as a species! @soundslikedavid
@lynda just subscribed to lynda.com all I can say its brilliant join now trust me @ButchSamurai
@lynda is an awesome resource. The membership is priceless if you take advantage of it. @diabetic_techie
One of the best decision I made this year. Buy a 1yr subscription to @lynda @cybercaptive
guys lynda.com (@lynda) is the best. So far I’ve learned Java, principles of OO programming, and now learning about MS project @lucasmitchell
Signed back up to @lynda dot com. I’ve missed it!! Proper geeking out right now! #timetolearn #geek @JayGodbold
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.


Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ.

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.


Mark all as unwatched Cancel

Congratulations

You have completed Computer Literacy for Windows.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


OK
Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member?

Become a member to like this course.

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses.

Get started

Already a member?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferencesfrom the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Are you sure you want to delete this note?

No

Your file was successfully uploaded.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.


Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

   
submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.