Basic Steps in Building Your PC
Building your own PC involves selecting and buying a few key components (see Figure 1) and then connecting them together with ribbon cables (Figure 2) and other standard connectors that are usually provided with the components. For example, most power connectors come permanently attached to the power supply which itself usually comes with your computer case.
Some components, such as PCI expansion cards and the mainboard, will also require using a Phillips screwdriver to secure them properly. A Phillips screwdriver is probably the only tool youll need. A small flat-nosed screwdriver is sometimes useful for prying out PCI expansion slot covers or the cases I/O shield. If you have short fingernails and you need to change jumpers, a needle-nose pliers is sometimes handy.
After assembling your computer, youll need to install an operating system, which is really just a software procedure. Its common to talk about installing software, even though it only involves inserting CDs into the CD drive as required.
Your PC will be fully assembled before we install software. Well take you through installing an operating system step-by-step in detail in another chapter.
You may also want to examine and/or modify your systems BIOS, which well discuss later. Many times, youll be able to get your PC up and running adequately without tinkering with the mainboards BIOS at all. But, tweaking the BIOS may enhance your systems performance. Make changes to BIOS very carefully. For example, if you update your mainboards BIOS with Flash BIOS and your computer hangs, its possible your PC will no longer boot at all.
Well also discuss partitioning and formatting a hard drive. But, first, we need to get our parts together.
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How to Build Your Own PC (http://www.PCGuide.com/byop/) on PCGuide.com
Version 1.0 - Version Date: May 4, 2005
Adapted with permission from a work created by Charlie Palmer.
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