You are on page 1of 8

The great book of interview questions Computer hardware is anything that is not software so you can expect.

The screen youre looking at to read this answer is also called hardware. The mouse you used to click on the answer is also the hardware. The keyboard that let you type the question is hardware and most . The computer next to you is hardware and everything inside of it is hardware. 1. What is a Microprocessor? - Microprocessor is a program-controlled device, which fetches the instructions from memory, decodes and executes the instructions. Most Micro Processor are single- chip devices. 2. Give examples for 8 / 16 / 32 bit Microprocessor? - 8-bit Processor - 8085 / Z80 / 6800; 16-bit Processor - 8086 / 68000 / Z8000; 32-bit Processor - 80386 / 80486. 3. Why 8085 processor is called an 8 bit processor? - Because 8085 processor has 8 bit ALU (Arithmetic Logic Review). Similarly 8086 processor has 16 bit ALU. 4. What is 1st / 2nd / 3rd / 4th generation processor? - The processor made of PMOS / NMOS / HMOS / HCMOS technology is called 1st / 2nd / 3rd / 4th generation processor, and it is made up of 4 / 8 / 16 / 32 bits. 5. Define HCMOS? - High-density n- type Complimentary Metal Oxide Silicon field effect transistor. 6. What does microprocessor speed depend on? - The processing speed depends on DATA BUS WIDTH. 7. Is the address bus unidirectional? - The address bus is unidirectional because the address information is always given by the Micro Processor to address a memory location of an input / output devices. 8. Is the data bus is Bi-directional? - The data bus is Bi-directional because the same bus is used for transfer of data between Micro Processor and memory or input / output devices in both the direction. 9. What is the disadvantage of microprocessor? - It has limitations on the size of data. Most Microprocessor does not support floating-point operations. 10. What is the difference between microprocessor and microcontroller? - In Microprocessor more op-codes, few bit handling instructions. But in Microcontroller: fewer op-codes, more bit handling Instructions, and also it is defined as a device that includes micro processor, memory, & input / output signal lines on a single chip. 11. What is meant by LATCH? - Latch is a D- type flip-flop used as a temporary storage device controlled by a timing signal, which can store 0 or 1. The primary function of a Latch is data storage. It is used in output devices such as LED, to hold the data for display. 12. Why does microprocessor contain ROM chips? - Microprocessor contain ROM chip because it contain instructions to execute data. 13. What is the difference between primary & secondary storage device? - In primary storage device the storage capacity is limited. It has a volatile memory. In secondary storage device the storage capacity is larger. It is a nonvolatile memory. Primary devices are: RAM / ROM. Secondary devices are: Floppy disc / Hard disk.

14. Difference between static and dynamic RAM? - Static RAM: No refreshing, 6 to 8 MOS transistors are required to form one memory cell, Information stored as voltage level in a flip flop. Dynamic RAM: Refreshed periodically, 3 to 4 transistors are required to form one memory cell, Information is stored as a charge in the gate to substrate capacitance. 15. What is interrupt? - Interrupt is a signal send by external device to the processor so as to request the processor to perform a particular work. 16. What is cache memory? - Cache memory is a small high-speed memory. It is used for temporary storage of data & information between the main memory and the CPU (center processing unit). The cache memory is only in RAM. 17. What is called .Scratch pad of computer.? - Cache Memory is scratch pad of computer. 18. Which transistor is used in each cell of EPROM? - Floating .gate Avalanche Injection MOS (FAMOS) transistor is used in each cell of EPROM. 19. Differentiate between RAM and ROM? - RAM: Read / Write memory, High Speed, Volatile Memory. ROM: Read only memory, Low Speed, Non Voliate Memory. 20. What is a compiler? - Compiler is used to translate the high-level language program into machine code at a time. It doesn.t require special instruction to store in a memory, it stores automatically. The Execution time is less compared to Interpreter. 21. Which processor structure is pipelined? - All x86 processors have pipelined structure. 22. What is flag? - Flag is a flip-flop used to store the information about the status of a processor and the status of the instruction executed most recently 23. What is stack? - Stack is a portion of RAM used for saving the content of Program Counter and general purpose registers. 24. Can ROM be used as stack? - ROM cannot be used as stack because it is not possible to write to ROM. 25. What is NV-RAM? - Nonvolatile Read Write Memory, also called Flash memory. It is also know as shadow RAM.

Intel computer hardware interview questions


The following questions are used for screening the candidates during the first interview. The questions apply mostly to fresh college grads pursuing an engineering career at Intel. 1. Have you studied buses? What types? 2. Have you studied pipelining? List the 5 stages of a 5 stage pipeline. Assuming 1 clock per stage, what is the latency of an instruction in a 5 stage machine? What is the throughput of this machine ? 3. How many bit combinations are there in a byte? 4. For a single computer processor computer system, what is the purpose of a processor cache and describe its operation? 5. Explain the operation considering a two processor computer system with a cache for each processor.

6. What are the main issues associated with multiprocessor caches and how might you solve them? 7. Explain the difference between write through and write back cache. 8. Are you familiar with the term MESI? 9. Are you familiar with the term snooping? 10. Describe a finite state machine that will detect three consecutive coin tosses (of one coin) that results in heads. 11. In what cases do you need to double clock a signal before presenting it to a synchronous state machine? 12. You have a driver that drives a long signal & connects to an input device. At the input device there is either overshoot, undershoot or signal threshold violations, what can be done to correct this problem? 13. What are the total number of lines written by you in C/C++? What is the most complicated/valuable program written in C/C++? 14. What compiler was used? 15. What is the difference between = and == in C? 16. Are you familiar with VHDL and/or Verilog? 17. What types of CMOS memories have you designed? What were their size? Speed? 18. What work have you done on full chip Clock and Power distribution? What process technology and budgets were used? 19. What types of I/O have you designed? What were their size? Speed? Configuration? Voltage requirements? 20. Process technology? What package was used and how did you model the package/system? What parasitic effects were considered? 21. What types of high speed CMOS circuits have you designed? 22. What transistor level design tools are you proficient with? What types of designs were they used on? 23. What products have you designed which have entered high volume production? 24. What was your role in the silicon evaluation/product ramp? What tools did you use? 25. If not into production, how far did you follow the design and why did not you see it into production?

Embedded systems interview questions


1. Can structures be passed to the functions by value? 2. Why cannot arrays be passed by values to functions? 3. Advantages and disadvantages of using macro and inline functions? 4. What happens when recursion functions are declared inline? 5. Scope of static variables? 6. Difference between object oriented and object based languages? 7. Multiple inheritance - objects contain howmany multiply inherited ancestor? 8. What are the 4 different types of inheritance relationship? 9. How would you find out the no of instance of a class? 10. Is java a pure object oriented language? Why?

11. Order of constructor and destructor call in case of multiple inheritance? 12. Can u have inline virtual functions in a class? 13. When you inherit a class using private keyword which members of base class are visible to the derived class? 14. What is the output of printf("\nab\bcd\ref"); -> ef 15. #define cat(x,y) x##y concatenates x to y. But cat(cat(1,2),3) does not expand but gives preprocessor warning. Why? 16. Can you have constant volatile variable? Yes, you can have a volatile pointer? 17. ++*ip increments what? it increments what ip points to 18. Operations involving unsigned and signed unsigned will be converted to signed 19. a+++b -> (a++)+b 20. malloc(sizeof(0)) will return valid pointer 21. main() {fork();fork();fork();printf("hello world"); } will print 8 times. 22. Array of pts to functions void (*fptr[10])() 23. Which way of writing infinite loops is more efficient than others? there are 3ways. 24. # error what it does? 25. How is function itoa() written? 26. Who to know wether systemuses big endian or little endian format and how to convert among them? 27. What is interrupt latency? 28. What is forward reference w.r.t. pointers in c? 29. How is generic list manipulation function written which accepts elements of any kind? 30. What is the difference between hard real-time and soft real-time OS? 31. What is interrupt latency? How can you recuce it? 32. What is the differnce between embedded systems and the system in which rtos is running? 33. How can you define a structure with bit field members? 34. What are the features different in pSOS and vxWorks? 35. How do you write a function which takes 2 arguments - a byte and a field in the byte and returns the value of the field in that byte? 36. What are the different storage classes in C? 37. What are the different qualifiers in C? 38. What are the different BSD and SVR4 communication mechanisms

Computer architecture and design interview questions


1. What is pipelining? 2. What are the five stages in a DLX pipeline? 3. For a pipeline with n stages, whats the ideal throughput? What prevents us from achieving this ideal throughput? 4. What are the different hazards? How do you avoid them? 5. Instead of just 5-8 pipe stages why not have, say, a pipeline with 50 pipe stages? 6. What are Branch Prediction and Branch Target Buffers?

7. How do you handle precise exceptions or interrupts? 8. What is a cache? 9. Whats the difference between Write-Through and Write-Back Caches? Explain advantages and disadvantages of each. 10. Cache Size is 64KB, Block size is 32B and the cache is Two-Way Set Associative. For a 32-bit physical address, give the division between Block Offset, Index and Tag. 11. What is Virtual Memory? 12. What is Cache Coherency? 13. What is MESI? 14. What is a Snooping cache? 15. What are the components in a Microprocessor? 16. What is ACBF(Hex) divided by 16? 17. Convert 65(Hex) to Binary 18. Convert a number to its twos compliment and back 19. The CPU is busy but you want to stop and do some other task. How do you do it?

Hardware design interview questions


1. Give two ways of converting a two input NAND gate to an inverter 2. Given a circuit, draw its exact timing response. (I was given a Pseudo Random Signal Generator; you can expect any sequential ckt) 3. What are set up time & hold time constraints? What do they signify? Which one is critical for estimating maximum clock frequency of a circuit? 4. Give a circuit to divide frequency of clock cycle by two 5. Design a divide-by-3 sequential circuit with 50% duty circle. (Hint: Double the Clock) 6. Suppose you have a combinational circuit between two registers driven by a clock. What will you do if the delay of the combinational circuit is greater than your clock signal? (You cant resize the combinational circuit transistors) 7. The answer to the above question is breaking the combinational circuit and pipelining it. What will be affected if you do this? 8. What are the different Adder circuits you studied? 9. Give the truth table for a Half Adder. Give a gate level implementation of the same. 10. Draw a Transmission Gate-based D-Latch. 11. Design a Transmission Gate based XOR. Now, how do you convert it to XNOR? (Without inverting the output) 12. How do you detect if two 8-bit signals are same? 13. How do you detect a sequence of "1101" arriving serially from a signal line? 14. Design any FSM in VHDL or Verilog. 15. Explain RC circuit.s charging and discharging. 16. Explain the working of a binary counter. 17. Describe how you would reverse a singly linked list.

Sample Computer Hardware interview questions

1. Is it possible to increase the number of available PCI slots on my computer? 2. How can I print to a printer connected to an Airport Base Station? 3. What is the difference between the DVD-R and DVD+R formats? 4. What is the difference between Firewire 1394a and 1394b? 5. Can I put my computer (tower) on its side, or does it need to stand up? 6. Why is my mouse jumpy? 7. What is a lost cluster? 8. Why is my monitors screen smaller than advertised? 9. Why does a 20 flat screen display have a larger screen than a 20 CRT monitor? 10. Can I hook up two computers to one display or monitor? 11. If I hook up two monitors to my computer, can two people work on the system at the same time? 12. What does it mean to defragment a hard disk? 13. Are Zip disks more reliable than 3.5 diskettes (floppy disks)? 14. Why does my hard drive make a lot of noise? 15. Why does my hard drive spit and shutter so much even after I defragmented it? 16. What would I want to partition my hard drive? 17. What does it mean to reformat a hard drive? 18. What is the difference between AGP and PCI graphics cards? 19. Why wont my scanner work? 20. Why do videos run slow on my computer? 21. How do find out how much RAM my computer has and how much it is using? 22. How can I upgrade my computer to USB 2.0? 23. Can I use a generic v.92 modem from Wal-Mart in my Dell computer? 24. What is the difference between the AMD Athlon and Intel Pentium processors? 25. What does scalable mean, in reference to a computer? 26. Can I still start my computer if my hard drive fails? 27. Why wont my computer boot up after I installed new memory? 28. What does it mean to power cycle a device? 29. How can I tell if my CD/DVD drive burns CDs or DVDs? 30. How can I make sure everything is deleted off my hard drive before I sell my computer? 31. How do I know if the blank CDs & DVDs I buy are rewritable? 32. Is it possible to recover files off a disk that has been reformatted or initialized? 33. What do I need in order to burn my own CDs? 34. What is the difference between an AGP and a PCI graphics card? 35. How can I tell if a memory module is ECC parity RAM or non-ECC non-parity RAM? 36. Can I replace non-ECC memory with ECC memory? 37. How do I open files from a USB flash drive? 38. Why wont my new IDE hard drive work after I just installed it? 39. What is the difference between a double density (DD) diskette, and a high density (HD) diskette? 40. Why is monitors screen blank when I start up my computer? 41. I changed my monitors color settings and cant see anything now. What should I do?

42. How can I connect my computer to a TV or television screen? 43. What are some examples of computer peripheral devices? 44. Why is the picture on my monitor fuzzy? 45. How many monitors can I hook up to my desktop computer? 46. Why does my monitor display a Sync. Out of Range error message? 47. Can I fax a document without a fax machine? 48. What does it mean when a computer is low on resources? 49. What is the difference between physical memory and available memory? 50. What is the difference between memory and hard disk space? 51. What is the difference between burning and ripping? 52. Will a USB 1.0 or 1.1 device work with my computer that only has USB 2.0 ports? 53. What are the Alt (Option) and Control (Ctrl) keys for? 54. What is the difference between recover and restore? 55. Can I use my internal hard drive as an external hard drive? 56. Will adding more RAM give my computer more free space? 57. Can I transfer a program like Print Shop that is on many CDs to a single DVD? 58. What is the difference between a USB hard drive and a USB flash drive? 59. How can I free up space on my hard disk?

Read more: computer hardware interview questions and answers pdf - Globalshiksha.com http://www.globalshiksha.com/computer+hardware+interview+questions+and+answers+ pdf/search/#ixzz1URZ095bc

Electronic engineer interview questions


By admin | February 5, 2006

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 11. 13. 15. 17.

What is D-FF? What is the basic difference between Latches and Flip flops? What is a multiplexer? How can you convert an SR Flip-flop to a JK Flip-flop? How can you convert an JK Flip-flop to a D Flip-flop? What is Race-around problem? How can you rectify it? Which semiconductor device is used as a voltage regulator and why? Explain an ideal voltage source? Explain zener breakdown and avalanche breakdown? What is the need of filtering ideal response of filters and actual response of filters? What is impulse response? What is CMRR? Which range of signals is used for terrestrial transmission?

10. What are the different types of filters? 12. What is sampling theorem? 14. Explain the advantages and disadvantages of FIR filters compared to IIR counterparts. 16. Explain half-duplex and full-duplex communication? 18. Why is there need for modulation? 19. Which type of modulation is used in TV transmission?

20. Why we use vestigial side band (VSB-C3F) transmission for picture? 21. When transmitting digital signals is it necessary to transmit some harmonics in addition to fundamental frequency? 22. For asynchronous transmission, is it necessary to supply some synchronizing pulses additionally or to supply or to supply start and stop bit? 23. BPFSK is more efficient than BFSK in presence of noise. Why? 24. What is meant by pre-emphasis and de-emphasis? 25. Explain 3 dB cutoff frequency? Why is it 3 dB, not 1 dB? 26. Explain ASCII, EBCDIC?

Hardware design interview questions


By admin | December 7, 2003

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

Give two ways of converting a two input NAND gate to an inverter Given a circuit, draw its exact timing response. (I was given a Pseudo Random Signal Generator; you can expect any sequential ckt) What are set up time & hold time constraints? What do they signify? Which one is critical for estimating maximum clock frequency of a circuit? Give a circuit to divide frequency of clock cycle by two Design a divide-by-3 sequential circuit with 50% duty circle. (Hint: Double the Clock) Suppose you have a combinational circuit between two registers driven by a clock. What will you do if the delay of the combinational circuit is greater than your clock signal? (You cant resize the combinational circuit transistors)

7. 8. 9. 11. 13. 15. 17.

The answer to the above question is breaking the combinational circuit and pipelining it. What will be affected if you do this? What are the different Adder circuits you studied? Give the truth table for a Half Adder. Give a gate level implementation of the same. Design a Transmission Gate based XOR. Now, how do you convert it to XNOR? (Without inverting the output) How do you detect a sequence of "1101" arriving serially from a signal line? Explain RC circuits charging and discharging. Describe how you would reverse a singly linked list.

10. Draw a Transmission Gate-based D-Latch. 12. How do you detect if two 8-bit signals are same? 14. Design any FSM in VHDL or Verilog. 16. Explain the working of a binary counter.