* TPM is a microcontroller that stores encryption keys, passwords and digital certificates.
* When TPM technology first hit the market, it was available only in discrete form.
That is, the silicon module was separate from other system elements and communicated with them via a dedicated hardware bus.
* More recently, silicon manufacturers have begun to integrate TPM functionality into existing parts.
* Advances in on processor technologies combined with the flexibility of the TPM protocols mean that it is possible to implement the TPM as an integrated solution or in firmware.