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[ The PC Guide | Procedure Guide | Setup and Inspection Procedures ]

Post-Assembly Initial Test Procedure

This procedure describes system tests that you should perform after setting up a system or completing a significant upgrade such as a motherboard upgrade. Using this procedure will help you to verify that you have completed your assembly successfully and that all the various components in your system are working properly.

Procedure Overview:

  • Difficulty Level: 2 (Low).
  • Risk Factor: 2 (Low).
  • Hardware Required: You may need a flashlight, screwdriver or needle-nose pliers if you need to make adjustments to any of the hardware, but otherwise, no hardware is required.
  • Software Required: Bootable floppy disk.
  • Time to Perform: About 10 minutes.
  • Preparation / Warnings:
    • Make sure you ground yourself before touching any components. Also be extremely careful when working inside the case with the power on.
    • Always power the system down safely before changing anything inside the box.
    • Your system will probably vary from the one discussed here, so be sure to test whatever your system actually contains.
    • I assume that the system has been powered up and is able to boot up from the floppy disk to a DOS prompt. If you are having problems getting the system to boot up, you need to resolve that first before commencing this procedure. Try looking at the Boot Process Troubleshooting section for help.
    • If you have an AMI BIOS with a graphical BIOS setup program, then you already know whether or not your mouse is working. Otherwise, you will have to wait until you go to install Windows to test your mouse.

Procedure Steps:

  1. Check LEDs: Check the power LED and the turbo LED (if connected). Both should be on. You should also see the hard disk LED come on during the boot process, when the BIOS is doing its testing, but it may not. You may want to try reversing the leads of the hard disk LED if it does not light up, but you may also want to wait until you are sure the hard disk is in action.
  2. Test Turbo Button (if applicable): If your system has an operational turbo button, press it and see if the turbo LED toggles. Note that in most systems this button does not actually do anything.
  3. Check Hard Disk Drive: The hard disk should be spinning.
  4. Check Fans: Make sure that the power supply fan, CPU fan, and any other fans in the system are all spinning and not obstructed.
  5. Test CD-ROM Drive Mechanism: Press the eject button on the CD-ROM to test if the drive has power and the tray is working.
  6. Check System Configuration (during next bootup): In the next step you will reset the system. While the system is rebooting, carefully check the system configuration screen that the BIOS displays. Make sure that all the storage devices, serial and parallel ports and other devices are listed. Check the listed total for the system memory and make sure that it is correct. Make sure the processor's listed speed is correct. Reset the system a second time if necessary (the screen may scroll past too fast).
  7. Test Reset Button: Press the reset button and reboot the system.
  8. Test Keylock: If your system has a keylock, test it by turning it to the locked position and rebooting. You should get an error message saying that they keyboard is locked. Unlock the case.

  After the system has been running for at least 10 minutes, continue with these steps:

  1. Turn System Off: Turn the power to the system off.
  2. Ground Yourself: Touch the outside of the metal box of the power supply to ensure that you are grounded.
  3. Check Temperature of Processor, Memory and Cache Chips: Carefully touch the metal of the heat sink near where it attaches to the processor, or the edge of the processor itself. It should be warm but not too hot to the touch. Repeat for the memory chips, and the cache chips on the motherboard or cache module.
  4. Check Temperature of Hard Disk: The middle of the hard disk may be warm, but should definitely not be hot (in fact, it will normally be not much above room temperature).

Next: Hard Disk Partitioning and Formatting Procedure

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