Computer Port

Computer Port

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A computer port, often simply referred to as a port, serves as an interface or point of connection between the computer and other computers or peripheral devices. There are two main types of ports: physical and virtual.

  1. Physical Ports: These are the outlets that you see on the back or sides of your computer, which are used to connect physical devices to your computer. For example, USB ports, HDMI ports, VGA ports, Ethernet ports, etc. Different types of physical ports allow for the connection of different types of devices, such as monitors, printers, mice, keyboards, external storage devices, network cables, and more.
  2. Virtual or Network Ports: These are not physical connections but are used in networking as a way to direct internet or network traffic to a specific location or process on a computer. For example, web traffic often comes into port 80 (for HTTP) or 443 (for HTTPS) on a server. Each service or protocol running on a computer is typically associated with a specific port number, allowing data to be directed to the right program.

Each type of port has a specific purpose and facilitates different types of data transfer, whether that’s for network communications or for connecting peripherals to a computer. The term “port” is used because it’s akin to a physical port or harbor, where goods (in this case, data) can be moved in and out.

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