Build your own PC, Part I: Components

Choosing your components

When building your own PC, you can choose every component and build a system tailored to your needs.

  • Processors

  • Motherboards

  • Memory

  • Disk drives

  • Graphics, sound and modem

  • Monitor

  • Case, keyboard and mouse

  • Operating system

    Getting started

    Before you work on the components inside a computer, you should take precautions to prevent them from being damaged by static electricity, which can easily destroy your processor or other expensive parts.

    A quick-and-dirty static discharge method is to always touch the bare metal of the computer case before handling any of the components, though using an anti-static strap is better and safer. Computer components come in special plastic bags, which counter static, and you shouldn't use ordinary plastic bags to store them. Keep the parts inside their anti-static bag until you're ready to use them, and lay them on top of the bag if you need to put them down somewhere.

    Next, take a good look at your motherboard and its manual before you put it in the case. There may be a few jumpers that will have to be set and it's easier to do this before you put it in the case.

  • Lid off

  • Set jumpers

  • Fix the motherboard in the case

  • Insert the RAM

  • Insert the processor

    Next month:

    Part II: We guide you through installing storage drives and an operating system.

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