On large machines, CPUs require one or more printed circuit boards. On personal computers and small workstations, the CPU is housed in a single chip called a microprocessor. Since the 1970's the microprocessor class of CPUs has almost completely overtaken all other CPU implementations.
The CPU itself is an internal component of the computer. Modern CPUs are small and square and contain multiple metallic connectors or pins on the underside. The CPU is inserted directly into a CPU socket, pin side down, on the motherboard. Each motherboard will support only a specific type or range of CPU so you must check the motherboard manufacturer's specifications before attempting to replace or upgrade a CPU. Modern CPUs also have an attached heat sink and small fan that go directly on top of the CPU to help dissipate heat.
Two typical components of a CPU are the following: