Overclocking is the process of forcing a computer component to run at a higher frequency than the manufacturer's specification. Although there are many different reasons for overclocking, the most popular one is to increase hardware performance. Overclocking can result in system instability and sometimes even hardware failure if done carelessly.
Overclocking is mostly practiced by PC enthusiasts in order to realize the full potential of their computers. Some hardware enthusiasts purchase a low-end computer and overclock it, thereby attaining performance of a higher-end system, while others will overclock high end components, attaining unprecedented performance.
Commonly overclocked components include: processors, video cards, motherboard chipsets, and RAM.