The assembling of a computer is not a very complex process, as many people would believe. Seemingly, it is very straightforward and takes exceptionally little time. Nevertheless, even though the process is easy, it should be done cautiously to evade needless damage to the system. The process involves opening the empty computer case, organizing to fit the components, fitting the computer’s motherboard, cooler, processor, and RAM, installing the sound card and graphics card, fitting the computer’s hard disk as well as floppy drive, installing the CD-ROM and floppy drives, joining the ribbon cables and powering the motherboard and drives. Technology and technological innovations have been the drive of 21st century and therefore assembling the different parts that make up a computer makes one believe that they are part of the technological world (Soper, & Mueller, 2013).
The initial step to a successful computer assembling as I have learnt over the years is being organized or prepared beforehand so that during the process one is not stuck for lacking a particular tool or component. I have a PC toolkit that has the necessary tools such as flashlight, anti-static wrist strap, needle-nose pliers, electrical tape, Phillips screwdriver (#2), 5mm nut driver or socket wrench and standard slot screwdriver among others. Reading the manuals is and checking the diagrams is important as it makes one get accustomed and understand further every component and where its supposed to be fitted and also know the precautionary measures necessary for one’s security (Goel, 2010).
Step 1: Examine and open Your Computer Case
To start, I open up the case’s box by taking out the side panels. In this step, there is supposedly some twisting of a number of thumbscrews and unscrew several actual screws. After the case is unbolted, take note of the PC’s power supply, where the DVD/CD drive will go, location of the hard drive bays, etc. In the casing, there is a bag containing screws, power cord as well as other varied hardware, grab them and put them aside as they will be needed in the subsequent step (Soper, & Mueller, 2013).
Step 2: Fitting the Motherboard
To fix the motherboard, screw in the motherboard spacer mounts. First, I locate the screw holes found on the motherboard and uncover the matching holes on the motherboard tray. Lay a standoff in every screw hole on the plate and place the motherboard in such a way that I can spot the holes within the crest of the standoffs via the screw holes located in the motherboard. After that, I make sure that all the ports situated on the motherboard are exactly mating with the installed backplate, and create any essential adjustments. I then fasten a screw through all the motherboard screw holes into the underneath standoffs. The screws have to be snug but not too tight as tightening them can break the motherboard (Goel, 2010).
Step 3: installing CPU and Cooler, and connecting fan power
The CPU is then inserted in its socket by raising the small handle located at the socket’s side. After I insert the processor smoothly, I then lock the handle back down. Before installing the cooler, I first apply thermal paste on top of the processor to aid in transferring heat from the CPU to the cooler. Then connect the cooler to the socket and fix it with clips. Immediately after installing the cooler hook up any cable for power for the fan, (the fan is already attached to the cooler) (Rosenthal, 2004).
Step 4: Installing RAM [random access memory]
Next, I install the RAM (random access memory). This is achieved by locating the RAM slots on the motherboard, and installing the DIMM memory modules into the DIMM socket. The RAM modules have an indentation underside where the levers fit. Then, cautiously press the RAM module into the slot since too much force may damage particular motherboard tracks. To know that the module is correctly seated into its key, the notch is supposed to snap into or produce a snapping sound. Subsequently, I add RAM at the slit labeled “DIMM 1” or “Bank 0 (Soper, & Mueller, 2013).
Step 5: Graphics, Sound and Network
The next step involves fitting the sound, graphics and network cards. Select a PCI (Peripheral Component Interconnect) slot that is located at the core of the motherboard for every plug-in cards as well as the sound card. Prior to fitting an expansion card, I take out the proper slot insert from the back plate of the motherboard tray. To ensure that these cards properly seat, I line up each card with its respective slot and gradually insert it by applying a little force on every end of the respective card (Goel, 2010).
Step 6: Install the hard disk, floppy and CD-ROM Drive
Installing the floppy, hard disk and CD-ROM drive is the next step. The drive holes are usually covered by metal knockouts and to reveal the holes I usually knock them out by use of force. When the holes are opened up, I feed the drives to their respective bays, and then screw them into their respective places gently. Afterwards, connect motherboard and power cables of each drive (Soper, & Mueller, 2013).
Step 7: Connecting the Ribbon Cables
After all major components, such as the processor, Sound and graphics cards, motherboard, RAM, hard disk, floppy as well as CD-ROM drive have been mounted, it is time to attach the cables. The two main cable involved include the 80-pin cable made for CD-ROM and hard disk as well as the 34-pin cable for floppy drive. In this case, connect the 80-pin cable to the hard disk and CR-ROM drive while the 34-pin cable connects the floppy drive (Rosenthal, 2004).
Step 8: Drive Power Connectors
Drive power connectors are necessary since they are used for delivering power to the respective drives. Attach each power connector cable emerging from the power supply to its respective drive such as floppy drive, CD-ROM drive and hard disk. The large ATX plug usually plugs into the motherboards’ power socket (Rosenthal, 2004).
Step 9: Front Panel Connections
The subsequent step includes making the frontal panel connections so that the frontal panel functionalities become operational. The HDD LED and HD pins join to the cable for hard disk activity LED, Power SW plug links to the computer’s on/off button, while the SPK plug is the loudspeaker’s output pin, the Reset cable is connected to the RESET pin and Power LED connection is connected with its respective 2-pin cable (Goel, 2010).
After all components have been fitted and connected properly, I usually recheck basically everything ranging from checking the motherboard jumper configuration, the secure state of the drives, the tightness of the screws, are the all cables in and do they fit snugly, and recheck whether the plug-in cards, RAM modules and processor are firmly seated in their respective sockets. Most importantly, check if all drives are well connected to the power cables, and connect the power supply cable, monitor, keyboard and mouse. If everything looks good, power or rather start the PC, and subsequently install the OS (operating system) (Soper, & Mueller, 2013).
All the above steps such as fitting the motherboard on the mounting plate, fitting in the cooler, processor and RAM, installing sound and graphics cards as well as fitting hard disk, floppy and CD-ROM drives are necessary towards ensuring that the computer operates properly. The significance of this process is that it ensures that one has a working computer (Rosenthal, 2004).
Goel, A. (2010). Computer fundamentals. New Delhi: Dorling Kindersley (India).
Rosenthal, M. (2004). Build your own PC(4th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill/Osborne.
Soper, M. E., & Mueller, S. (2013).COMPUTER HARDWARE: Installation, Interfacing, Troubleshooting and Maintenance (Deluxe 3rd ed.). Indianapolis, IN: Pearson Certification;.