Computer Definitions
How to Build a Computer
How to build a gamer's computer, how to build a homework and internet computer, how to build a high performance graphics computer.
    When learning
how to build a computer, all that is really required is the ability to follow a fairly simple set of guidelines. The first step is to plan out the computer you want.
    Start by selecting a CPU. Intel and AMD provide chips for every level of computer you might build, from a basic internet and homework machine, to a high performance model for gaming and graphics.
How to build a computer starts with this most basic decision.
    Since Intel and AMD use a number of different sockets, your selection of motherboard will be based on the CPU choice. Don't worry that features you want will be excluded by picking a certain CPU. Rest assured, when you build a computer, many boards will fit your needs.
    Decide whether you want video on the board, or an AGP slot for a graphics card.
How to build a computer also must be based on these personal preferences. Ask yourself how many PCI slots will be needed for things like modems, or capture cards. Consider the size of the case you want to use, because this will determine the "form factor", the size of the board itself.
    Pick a hard drive that will give you room to grow through the life of the computer.
How to build a computer that anticipates future needs must be part of your plan. Sizes over 200GB are becoming common. Decide if you need ATA, SATA, SCSI, or EIDE.
    You'll have to get a CD, but have you considered that a CD/DVD rewritable drive is available for just a few dollars more? Prices have fallen drastically in just the past few months.
How to build a computer with true economy and value should be one of your goals.
    Case selection is partly a matter of esthetics, and partly practicality. You may strive for a certain look, but you'll require things like a certain number of fan ports to cool the computer you build.
How to build a computer that combines these elements makes case selection vital. You may want USB and firewire ports front and rear. Strive to build a computer to fit all the uses you'll have for it.
    Confront cooling problems head-on. I recommend buying CPU, heatsink, and fan bundled together, on the grounds that the manufacturer has lots to lose if their chip gets the reputation of overheating. Get as many case fans as your case has ports to accomodate, and buy good quality.
How to build a computer that doesn't overheat can be as simple as getting one extra fan.
How to build a computer, the actual assembly, can be learned from a good guidebook, like our Building A PC For Beginners. In it, you'll learn how to select parts, how to perform every step of assembly, how to load Windows XP, and how to troubleshoot.
    Sample some pages from the book. Start with
Installing the CPU and see how our simple approach will guide you on your way. Or perhaps you'd like to read the book's first page, just like you would at a bookstore.
    Then, please purchase the book from one of the online merchants advertising in these pages, or ask for it at your local bookstore. We are distributed by Ingram, so we are available everywhere in the US.
Parts of the Motherboard
Table of Contents
Installing the CPU
Booting Up for the 1st Time
Computer Power Supply
Dream Machine or Basic PC
Install AGP Card
Selecting Parts, the first page Install RAM
Computer Cooling Problems
How to build a computer using retractors in tight corners
How to build a computer, plugging in a ribbon cable.