The Differences Between Software and Hardware

You have most likely heard the terms hardware and software at some point, but the question is, what is the difference between the two?

What is the Difference Between Software and Hardware?

The primary distinction between software and hardware is that hardware refers to the actual parts of a computer and software is instructions that tells a computer how to carry out a specific operation.

There are five factors that define the ways that software and hardware are different.

  • Categories

Hardware has four main categories: input devices, output devices, auxiliary storage devices, and internal components. Software, on the other hand, only has two main categories: system software and application software.

  • Tangibility

Software is intangible, meaning you can’t physically touch it. Hardware is tangible and you are able to touch it.

  • The Way They Are Built

Electrical and other materials are used in the development of the hardware. Writing instructions in a programming language is how software is created.

  • Replacement

It is possible to swap out a damaged hardware component for a new one, while software that has been damaged can be repaired using a backup copy. 

  • Initialization

Once the software is installed in the system, the hardware begins to operate. Software must be installed on the computer before it can be used.

Do You Have Questions about IT?

We are here to help! At JENLOR our team of IT professionals are ready to help you with any of your software or hardware needs. Contact us today for a free consultation.