noun \ˈhärd-ˌwer\

: things (such as tools or parts of machines) that are made of metal

: equipment used for a particular purpose; especially : computer equipment

Full Definition of HARDWARE

:  ware (as fittings, cutlery, tools, utensils, or parts of machines) made of metal
:  major items of equipment or their components used for a particular purpose <educational hardware>: as
a :  military equipment
b :  the physical components (as electronic and electrical devices) of a vehicle (as a spacecraft) or an apparatus (as a computer)
:  an award (as a trophy, medal, or cup) given in a sports competition

Examples of HARDWARE

  1. She bought some new hardware for her system.
  2. <gathered together the hardware needed to set up a first aid station at the finish line for the marathon>

First Known Use of HARDWARE

circa 1515

Other Hardware Terms

adze, auger, awl, chock, ferrule, punch, tang


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Computer machinery and equipment, including memory, cabling, power supply, peripheral devices, and circuit boards. Computer operation requires both hardware and software. Hardware design specifies a computer's capability; software instructs the computer on what to do. The advent of microprocessors in the late 1970s led to much smaller hardware assemblies and accelerated the proliferation of computers. Today's personal computers are as powerful as the early mainframes, while mainframes are now smaller and have vastly more computing power than the early models.


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