Fixing PC Keyboard Problems

keyboardKeyboard is a primary input device of the PC. It is used to enter commands and type text. The keyboards are similar to the type writers but have additional keys. There are several keys on the keyboard including the alphabets and the numbers. The different type of keys is:

  1. Alphanumeric: Enables the user to enter text and numbers.
  2. Punctuation: Enables the user to punctuate sentences and additional characters.
  3. Navigation: Used to move the cursor between different places on a screen.
  4. Special: Perform some special functions on the data.
  5. Windows: Open windows-specific items like the start menu.
  6. Function: Used to perform certain functions like provide help.
  7. Numeric: Enables the user to perform numerical operations on the data.
  8. Modification: Enables the user to use additional features like capitalizing letters.

Working of a Keyboard

The computer keyboard has a microprocessor that studies the state of each key on the keyboard and sends the appropriate signal to the computer. There is arid of circuits underneath the keys on the keyboard. It is known as the key matrix. When you press a key, the circuit is closed and the current flows. The microprocessor detects the closed circuit and notes the position of the circuit on the key matrix. The microprocessor has a character map of the keyboard in its ROM. It compares the location of the closed circuit to the same location in the character map. The character map is the comparison chart that tells the microprocessor which key is present at a particular location. If you press a combination of characters, the keyboard processor compares the combination to the character map to see if there is any designation for that particular combination. The keyboard processor analyses the key matrix and decides on the characters to be sent to the computer. These characters are maintained in a memory buffer and then sent in a stream to the computer. The data stream is then sent through a connector that connects the keyboard to the computer.

Troubleshooting a keyboard

The keyboard must be handled with a lot of care. You must not spill liquids or food particles on the keyboard. However, the keyboard is largely a trouble-free device if handled properly.

Computer displays keyboard error:

  1. Check if the keyboard is connected properly to the computer.
  2. Check connector pins and see if any pin is absent.
  3. Turn the keyboard over and hit gently to dislodge any dirt or pin stuck beneath the keys.
  4. Properly reconnect the keyboard. Ensure that no key is pressed or stuck when the system is starting up.
  5. If the keyboard does not work, connect the keyboard to another computer and see if it works.
  6. If still the keyboard does not work, check the port and connector which is connected from keyboard controller on the motherboard to the port to check for loose connections or damage.
  7. If the keyboard controller is damaged, you may have to replace the keyboard controller or the entire motherboard.

Keyboard does not operate properly:

  1. If the keys on the keyboard seem sticky, it is possible that the keyboard is dirty. If you eat or drink around the computer, you may drop substances onto the keyboard.
  2. You can clean the keyboard by blowing compressed air under the keys. This will remove the dry particles stuck underneath. This will also dry any split liquid.
  3. If you split any sticky liquid on the keyboard, compressed air will not help much. In this case, the best option is to remove one key at a time and clean underneath.

Understanding Computer IO Ports

Input/ Output port enables you to connect hardware devices such as the keyboard, flash drives, mouse, printer and scanners to the system. It is the entry and exit point for data from the system. A port is used to connect the system and a device together, using a connecting cable, so that they can communicate together. The different ports available are usually located at the back of the system case or they may also be located at the front side of the system case.

Types of ports:

The ports have different shapes and size and so before purchasing a device you must check if you can attach a device to the system using the port available on the system. Based on this the ports are classified into different types:

  1. Serial ports: A serial port is like a single lane road that sends and receives one bit of data at a time. Thus, eight bits of data in one byte travel one bit at a time, one behind the other. The serial port connector is also known as the communication or Com port and can have 9 or 25 pins. A serial port is used to connect devices such as the mouse, plotters, PDA docking devices, bar code readers, scales, device control circuits and external modems to the system.
  2. Parallel ports: A parallel port is like an eight lane road that transmits eight bits of data at a time. It is like eight cars moving on a wide road side by side. The parallel port connector has 25 pins to connect devices such as printers, scanners, external hard drives and tape drive backup devices.
  3. PS/2 ports: The PS/2 port is used to connect the keyboard and mouse to the system. The ports are available in a colour that matches the colour of the plug connecting the mouse and keyboard. This port uses 6 pins to connect the devices.
  4. Universal Serial Bus (USB) Ports: The USB port is a rectangular port that is used to connect a variety of devices to the system. The USB port also supplies power to the device such as web camera, if the device does not use an external power source. To use the USB device you must just plug the device into the USB port, as most USB device offer Plug-and-play support. You must install the USB drivers before using the USB port.
  5. Infrared ports: Devices use the infrared ports to communicate with the system without using wires. The devices send out infrared signals that enter the system through this port.
  6. Bluetooth ports: Bluetooth is technology which allows wireless communication between devices within a ranged distance. A Bluetooth adapter is required for the computer and a Bluetooth compatible device to communicate through Bluetooth
  7. IEEE 1394 BUS: The Institute of Electrical & Electronics Engineering (IEEE) 1394 is a standard for the external bus that enables fast and high serial data transfer between the system and the connected devices. The IEEE can transfer data at the speed of about 400 Mbps.

Troubleshooting problems with the I/O ports:

Problems with the I/O ports result in errors being displayed while using the device, the operating system may crash while using the device. The device may also not function if the device IRQ line conflicts with another device. A hardware device may not work if there is some problem with the I/O port, the system or with the device itself.

  1. Check if the device is properly connected to the port.
  2. Remove the device from the port and connect it to another vacant port.
  3. Scan the system for viruses.
  4. Uninstall and reinstall the device drivers.
  5. Check if the card for the port is properly attached to the motherboard.
  6. In the BIOS settings, check if that particular port is enabled.
  7. Try attaching the device to a different system to check if the device is functioning properly, if the device works on the other system then the port is spoilt.
  8. Troubleshoot the device.

Troubleshooting DVD Drive Problems

Digital Versatile Disk (DVD) is a form of digital storage. DVD is used to store music, video, games and multimedia applications. DVD is similar to a CD in appearance and structure. It offers high capacity and better quality as compared to the CD. The storage capacity of DVD is 7 times that of CD.

Working of DVD

Tracking system of DVD player consists of tracking motor and spindle motor. Tracking system is responsible for proper alignment of data tracks on the DVD and the laser beam. The tracking motor moves the laser assembly to and from the centre of the DVD. The spindle motor spins the DVD at a rate that allows for constant reading of data by the laser beam. DVD drive reads the data from DVDs with the help of a laser assembly, which focuses the laser beam on the DVD. The laser beam reads the data on the DVD that is stored in the form of microscopic pits. The laser beam focuses on the reflecting layer of the DVD. In case of the single layer DVD’s, laser passes through the layer and to the reflecting layer underneath it. If the DVD is dual layered, it has to focus on the inner reflective layer by passing through the two layers and then to the reflective layer.

The laser is reflected off the reflective layer onto a photosensitive receptor. The DVD track has data encoded in it in the form of pits, and the areas on the track that do not contain data are flat and smooth. The laser is reflected in a different manner from the smooth area as compared to the pits. The photosensitive receptor studies the reflected signal for changes in the reflection. The device that interprets the reflection changes and reads them as bits of data. The DVD drive has to convert the data read from the DVD into 1 or 0 bits. These bits of data are then sent to Digital to Analog Converter (DAC), if the data is intended for a device that uses analog data. If the device is digital, the data can be directly passed to the device.

Troubleshooting the DVD drive:

  1. There is no power in an internal DVD drive:
  • Internal DVD drives receive power from the computer supply. If the other parts of the computer are problem-free, it means that the power supply is not at fault.
  • Replace the connector of the DVD drive to the power supply. If the DVD drive does not start working even after the connector is replaced, the drive is faulty.
  1. The tray of the internal DVD drive will not open:
  • Restart the computer. Then try to open the tray.
  • If the tray does not open after restarting, check the BIOS settings to see if the computer recognizes the drive.
  • Try the manual eject button on the DVD drive.
  • Shutdown and unplug the computer. Use a small device like a paper clip to inset in the pin hole on the front of the DVD drive. Try to open the tray a little with the help of the paper clip, and the n open with your fingers.
  1. DVD drive runs lowly:
  • Check the cache size in the Performance tab of the System Properties. Select the quad speed setting.
  • Move the drive to the secondary controller if possible.
  • Check the drive specification and use auto detect in BIOS for the best results.
  • Install the appropriate drivers for the motherboard’s chipset and OS in use.


  1. Proper installation and configuration of the DVD drive is very important for the proper working of the DVD drive.
  2. DVD drives and burners have speed listings that indicate the speed of the drive as compared to the DVD standards.
  3. A combo drive can play DVD’s and record on CD’s.
  4. Troubleshooting the DVD drive can eliminate most of the problems of the DVD drive.
  5. DVD drives can experience problems due to power supply failures, computer problems, etc.


Simple Tips to Solve Motherboard Problems

Troubleshooting the Motherboard

motherboardIf the system crashes repeatedly, it is possible due to motherboard failure. However actual motherboard failure is rare. It is possible that some other problems like loose connections, power failure or overheating may cause system failure.

  1. Turn off the system and remove the power cord.
  2. Check connections on the motherboard.
  3. If you have made any changes to the BIOS settings, restore them to the default value.
  4. Ensure that the motherboard is not touching the system case or the drive tray.
  5. Check whether there are any cross connections between wires.
  6. Wear an anti static wristband.
  7. Place the removed components on antistatic package.

Instability in a new system:

A newly assembled system may show problems like frequent error messages and problems while starting up. These problems can be caused by a variety of reasons like loose connections or incorrect settings.  Some of the problems may also be caused due to motherboard.

  1. Check all connections and cables on the motherboard. The connections must be tight and placed properly.
  2. Ensure that the motherboard with the CPU, video card and the memory is properly connected to the power supply.
  3. Check the system temperature and ensure that the heat sink and fan are working properly.
  4. Check if the power supply is loaded with more devices and components than it can handle. If you have upgraded your system or added a device, the power supply must be able to handle it.
  5. The system memory may have failed. Check the system memory and ensure it is connected and configured properly. Also check if the memory is compatible with the motherboard.
  6. Check the jumper settings on the motherboard. Inspect the CPU for any problems.
  7. Check the BIOS settings and ensure if they are correct. If possible set them as default.
  8. Inspect the expansion cards on the motherboard for proper correction or configuration.
  9. Ensure that the hard disk drives have proper jumper settings.
  10. Check the IRQ settings of the system for any conflicts that can arise during system assembly or addition of new hardware.
  11. If your cache is corrupt or incompatible, it may lead to motherboard problems. Disable cache in BIOS. If the system works properly, then the cache was faulty.
  12. If the system does not work properly, check whether the cache is properly installed.

 System does not start though fans are working:

In some cases, you may not be able to access drives and the video may also not work. If the system does not start up, but the system fans work fine, it is mostly either a motherboard or CPU problem.

  1. Remove the CPU and reseat the Motherboard.
  2. Check the seating of the CPU on the motherboard and ensure that it is locked down.
  3. Ensure that the motherboard power supply is properly connected.
  4. Check all the ribbon cables to see that they are connected to the appropriate drives and they are oriented properly.
  5. Reset the BIOS settings to default. Try the safe booting procedures with power up defaults by referring to the motherboard manual.
  6. If the system does not start up, the memory, CPU or the motherboard are faulty.
  7. Remove any additional memory and try starting with minimum memory. Then swap the memory and try starting the system. If the system starts with either of the memories than the other memory is faulty.
  8. Check all jumpers and connections on the motherboard. Check the motherboard expansion slots for metal fragments.
  9. Replace the CPU on the motherboard, if the system works the CPU is faulty.
  10. If the system does not work with the new CPU, try placing the CPU on another motherboard. If it works then, your motherboard is faulty.

When switched ON, the system only beeps or shows POST error:

  1. Check post messages and correct the problem if possible.
  2. Check for perfect connection of socketed chips such as memory modules, BIOS or keyboard controller, CPU etc.
  3. Temporarily remove the network cards and other PCI cards from the motherboard.
  4. If the problem is solved then replace cards one by one and each time check for where actually fault lies.
  5. Remove and reset all essential expansion cards and check the interconnecting cables.
  6. If the system does not function than replace the Motherboard.


How to Install Norton Antivirus

Installing Norton Antivirus

Norton antivirus protects your computer from viruses, worms and Trojans. It also scans the web pages displayed in the browser for harmful code that can damage the system, clean viruses in incoming and outgoing emails. It also removes spyware software’s that slows down the system by tracking your system usage and leaking out important information such as passwords. You can install Norton antivirus software from the CD to protect the system from Virus, worms and Trojans.

Best practices:

  1. Check if your system has the necessary requirements specified in the software’s ‘System requirements’.
  2. Uninstall any previous version of Norton Antivirus, or any other antivirus software already installed on the system. Restart the system after uninstalling the software.
  3. Close all the open files and programs before installing the software.

Installation steps:

  1. Insert the Norton Antivirus CD inside the DVD drive.
  2. Browse the CD and locate the software setup file.
  3. Double click the setup file. The Norton antivirus window will appear.
  4. Click the ‘Install’ button. The ‘Welcome to Norton Antivirus setup screen appears.
  5. Click the ‘Next’ button. The preinstall check-up screen appears. The preinstall check-up, scans files on the system. The scan prompts you to delete the files that are infected with viruses.
  6. Click the ‘View details’ button to view the scan results.
  7. Click the ‘Next’ button. The select the destination folder screen appears. Select an appropriate destination folder.
  8. Click the ‘Next’ button. The installation starts and the ‘Norton Antivirus has been successfully installed’ screen appears.
  9. Select the ‘Restart Windows Now’ option.
  10. Click the ‘Finish’ button. Windows will restart and the ‘Norton antivirus 2006 Post Installation wizard’ appears.
  11. The ‘Post Installation’ wizard enables you to configure additional settings before using the Norton antivirus software.
  12. Click ‘Next’ button. The Norton antivirus ‘product registration’ screen appears. Select the option ‘I have already purchased the product and have a product key’.
  13. Click ‘Next’ button. The ‘Thank you’ screen appears. Click the ‘Finish’ button.

Configuring the Norton Antivirus:

  1. Click ‘Start’ – ‘Programs’ – ‘Norton Antivirus’. The Norton antivirus window appears.
  2. The window displays panes that have options to access and configure the different features. You must click the option from window that you want to access. The window displays the following:
  3. Live update: Displays the Live update window to update the Norton Antivirus.
  4. Options: Displays the options window to configure Norton Antivirus.
  5. Help & support: Displays a drop down menu with different help options.
  6. Norton Antivirus: Lists the different options available.
  • Status: Displays the status and a quick way to access the frequently used Norton Antivirus Features.
  • Scans: Displays the different scanning options.
  • Reports: Displays the scan summaries and virus information.
  1. Click on ‘options’. The Norton antivirus window appears and displays a button in the left pane and settings for the option in the right pane. The left pane displays the following:
  2. System: Specifies the options for scanning the system.
  3. Internet: Specifies options for scanning emails and messenger activity.
  4. Other: Specifies the different threats that must be identified on the system.
  5. Default all: Resets all the options to the default levels set by Norton.
  6. To change the settings, you must select the required option from the left pane, and click ok after changing the settings displayed in the right pane.

Scanning Drives:

Scanning checks the system for virus infected files. Norton antivirus enables you to select the drives, folders or files that you want to scan.

Best practice

  1. Update the software using live update before scanning.
  2. Close all the running programs before scanning.
  3. Open Norton antivirus and click ‘Scan for Viruses’ from the left pane. The ‘Scan for Viruses’ pane appears. It displays different options.
  4. Run full system scan. Scans the full system.
  5. Run Norton quick scan. Scans system for viruses when updates are downloaded.
  6. Scan all removable drives. Scans the removable media in drives such as floppy disk drive and CD drive.
  7. Scan all the floppy disks. Scans the media in the floppy disk drives.
  8. Scan drives. Displays a dialog box to select the drives to scan.
  9. Scan folders. Displays a dialog box to select the folders to scan.
  10. Scan files. Displays a dialog box to select the files to scan.
  11. Select the required scan option. The Norton antivirus scan starts displaying the status of the scan and the files scanned.
  12. Click the ‘Finish’ button to complete the scan.



How to Troubleshoot SMPS Problems

Troubleshooting SMPS

A power supply unit is the vital component of a system that supplies power to various components of the system. The power supply unit is an electronic component and may show some problems due to which the system may not start. Due to a faulty power supply, the components of a system may also get damaged. As a result, troubleshooting the power supply problems is also an essential task for maintaining the system. You can use various tools for troubleshooting SMPS. Various tools include a low power fine tip soldering iron and fine rosin core solder, Digital multimeter (DMM), twister, Brush, Screw driver set and Desoldering pump are used to diagnose the problems in SMPS.

System does not start:

When you switch on the system it does not start due to a faulty power supply unit. The power supply may not switch ON and the system may not respond. Sometimes the power supply unit may start but not be able to supply the appropriate voltage needed by various components of the system. In order to troubleshoot this problem:

  1. Make sure that the power connector of the system is properly plugged-in the main power supply junction.
  2. Check the internal connections of the system after removing the system case cover.
  3. Check the connection of the motherboard connector of the power supply unit with the motherboard.
  4. Check for any occurrence of the short circuit which might have happened inside the system case.
  5. Check if there is a problem with the main power supply junction.

Power supply fan does not work or emits a lot of sound:

The power supply fan is not working when the system is switched on or makes a lot of noise. The problem occurs if the power supply fan is not functional or if lots of dust is accumulated in the fan motor. To troubleshoot this problem:

  1. Shut down the system, remove the system case cover and clean the dirt or dust from the fan and power supply unit with a vacuum cleaner or with hand blower.
  2. Check the power supply fan and replace if it is defective.

UPS not handling power problems:

The UPS is not handling the power problems very well and does not function when there is a blackout. The system may also automatically shutdown at times. To troubleshoot this problem:

  1. Check the capacity of the UPS battery for supporting the electric current load for the system.
  2. Charge the battery of the UPS if needed by reducing some load from the UPS.
  3. Check the voltage selector switch, placed at the back of the system case and ensure that the voltage is according to the region.
  4. Check the connections of the motherboard and the disk drives with the power supply unit.
  5. Remove any extra disk drives if not needed during the current operation.

Before opening SMPS:

  1. Check the AC line.
  2. Check the power cord and Line voltage selector whether it has been set to the appropriate voltage according to the region.
  3. Remove all the daughter cards, FDD, HDD and supply connector and check the PG signal (+5 VDC Gray)
  4. Short pin no. 13 and 14 to see that fan is rotating and then check the O/P voltage by DMM.
  5. If the SMPS does not work when connected to the motherboard then check whether there is a problem with SMPS.

SMPS is dead, FAN moves for a moment and then stops:

This problem may occur due to faulty switching transistor circuitry in the feedback section. To troubleshoot this problem:

  1. Desolder both the switching transistor and check the fan.
  2. If the switching transistors are working properly, then check from oscillator and error amplifier IC.
  3. If there is no problem in IC, then check the driver transistors and diodes.
  4. Check the driver transformer and replace if the device is faulty.

SMPS voltage drops or increases:

This problem occurs due to faulty PWM section. To troubleshoot this problem:

  1. Check all the electrolytic capacitors in the PWM circuit and replace them if they are faulty.
  2. Check if there is a fault in IC TL 494.
  3. Check the diodes in the secondary rectifier circuit.

All the output voltages are OK except +5V:

This problem occurs if the secondary rectifier section is faulty. To troubleshoot this problem:

  1. Check Schottky diodes.
  2. Check the secondary rectifier diodes connected in +5V circuit.

SMPS makes hissing noise:

SMPS may make hissing noise because of loose transformer vibrating at a sub-harmonic frequency or dried up electrolytic capacitors. To troubleshoot this problem:

  1. Ensure that there is no short circuit or loose connection.
  2. Ensure that the power supply in not overloaded.


Easy Steps to Upgrade Windows 7 OS

Upgrading Windows

  1. It is always recommended to take a backup of windows before upgrading to Windows 7.
  2. Insert the Windows 7 DVD which you purchased. Double click the setup file and start the installation process.
  3. Note down the product key which is printed on the back side label of the DVD.
  4. Windows 7 will start loading the files and a status bar will be shown. After this the basic configuration window will be displayed.
  5. Select the ‘Language to install’, ‘Time & currency format’ & ‘Keyboard & input method’.
  6. Click ‘Next’. Select the Operating system which you want to install (x86 or 64 bit) architecture. Click ‘Next’.
  7. Click on ‘Install now’ to start installing Windows 7. The ‘End User License Agreement’ window is displayed. Select ‘I accept the license terms’ checkbox and click on ‘Next’.
  8. Select ‘Upgrade’ option. The drive option will be displayed. Select the drive on which you want to install Windows 7 and click ‘Next’.
  9. The ‘Installing Windows’ screen appears. Wait for this installation process to complete. Your computer might restart several times during this process.
  10. After the installation process is complete the ‘Set up Windows’ option is displayed.
  11. Type a username and the computer name for your PC. Click ‘Next’.
  12. Type the password if you want to setup for your windows or click ‘Next.
  13. Type your Windows product key and select ‘Automatically activate windows when I am online’ option. Click ‘Next’.
  14. Click on ‘Use recommended settings’ and click ‘Next’.
  15. Select the appropriate time zone, date & time settings. Select the type of network to which your computer is connected.
  16. The installation of Windows 7 is complete. The system will restart and you will get a login prompt to login to Windows.
  17. Check all the user account profiles and the data from your previous windows. If all is good and done properly than the upgrade is successful. Enjoy your Windows experience.


Installing Microsoft Office on your computer

Installing MS office application on your computer

  1. Insert the MS office 2007 DVD which you purchased in the DVD writer. The installation wizard will automatically appear.
  2. Enter the product key which is printed on the backside of the DVD cover. Click ‘Continue’.
  3. Select ‘I accept the terms of this agreement’ check box and click on ‘continue’.
  4. You have to select an option to install, Upgrade (to switch from previous version) or customize (to select the required features from the installation).
  5. Click on customize option, click on installation tab and deselect the programs which you do not use.
  6. Click on ‘Install now’ button.
  7. The installation progress window is displayed which shows you the status of the installation.
  8. It will take 10 to 15 minutes depending on your computer hardware. Click ‘close’.
  9. The installation is now complete. First time when you open any office program you will be asked to activate your product.
  10. Select ‘I want to activate the software over internet’ option. Click on ‘Next’.
  11. Click ‘Finish’ to complete the installation.

Installing Microsoft Security Essentials

  1. Download the Microsoft Security Essentials from the Microsoft download centre.
  2. When the Microsoft Security Essentials download completes click on ‘Run’ button.
  3. The installation process starts very quickly and the wizard is displayed.
  4. Click on ‘Next’, the terms and agreement window is displayed. Click on ‘I accept’ to accept the terms and conditions.
  5. In the next step you will be required to validate the copy of your Windows operating system. Click on ‘validate’.
  6. The ‘Ready to install Microsoft Security Essentials’ window displays. Click on ‘Install’.
  7. Once the ‘Microsoft Security Essentials’ is installed it immediately updates itself with the latest antivirus definitions.
  8. Click on ‘Finish’. Once the updates are done the Window changes to green colour from red. It says that the PC is now protected.
  9. Your installation is now complete.

Installing Smart Defragger

  1. Download the free software from internet. Close all the applications before starting the installation.
  2. Double click the setup file.  A window will be displayed to start the installation process.
  3. Click on ‘Next’. ‘Select the destination’ window appears. You may browse to select a different location to copy the set up files or you can simple select the default location.
  4. Click on ‘Next’. It will show you the name of the folder. If you want you can change the name of the folder. Click on ‘Next’ when you are done.
  5. Click on ‘Install’ to start the installation process. Click on ‘Finish’ to complete the installation process. This will complete the ‘Smart Defragger’ installation.

 Installing Ccleaner

  1. Download the free version of Ccleaner from the internet. Double click the setup file of Ccleaner.
  2. Click ‘Yes’ to activate the version. The Welcome screen is displayed, click on ‘Next’.
  3. Uncheck the option ‘Install Google chrome as my default browser’.
  4. Click ‘Install’ to start the installation process. It will take 1 to 2 minutes to complete the installation. Click ‘Finish’ to complete the installation process.
  5. The intelligently scan for cookies option will be displayed. Click ‘No’.
  6. The installation of Ccleaner is now complete.

Using Microsoft Office

Learning to use all the applications with the MS Office suite can take a long time, particularly if you teach yourself. There are many online tutorials which can help with the process and a search at YouTube will give you a good start. There are also many training providers running courses in all of the major cities. If you live in London we can recommend Paul Brown Training from personal experience.



Easy Steps to Assemble a Computer

Assembling a computer involves connecting internal and external components. Internal components include the ones that are installed inside a system case such as motherboard, RAM, Disk drives, SMPS and daughter cards. External components are devices that are attached to the system case, such as mouse, keyboard, scanner & printer.

Assembling a PC:

cpuThere are certain key components that you need to consider when assembling a computer. Depending on the requirements of the user, the components vary. The components that are required while assembling a computer are:

  1. Hard drive.
  2. Memory modules (RAM)
  3. Power supply (SMPS)
  4. Heat sink
  5. Fan
  6. IDE cables
  7. DVD writer
  8. Graphics card
  9. Monitor
  10. Keyboard & Mouse

Best practices while assembling a computer.

  1. Keep a static-sensitive device, such as anti-static wrist strap, to disperse static electricity.
  2. Disconnect the unit completely before starting to work with the system case.
  3. Use an air duster to blow the dust from the system case.
  4. Make use of the plastic ties to tie loose cabling inside the system case.
  5. Use a small torch to see the connections in the system case.
  6. Make note of all the important settings on as sheet of paper.

Hands on exercise:

  1. The first step in assembling a computer involves opening the system case.
  2. Turn the knob present on the side of the case and then slide out the lid. Some system cases have two covers, the right and left cover, which you need to remove. You have to unscrew the required screws in order to remove the covers.
  3. Match the new power supply unit with the image of the power supply unit shown in the manual and then start the installation.
  4. Search the location of the power supply unit in the system case.
  5. Insert the power supply unit in the system case. Align the screw holes of the system case with the screw holes of the power supply unit. Fix the screws of the system case with the screws of the power supply unit.
  6. Place the system cooling fan below the power supply box. Fasten the screws to attach the fan from outside the system case.

Installing the Microprocessor:

  1. Check the voltage requirements from the Motherboard and the Microprocessor documentation.
  2. Wear an anti-static wristband.
  3. Place the Motherboard on the work desk.
  4. Take the Microprocessor out from the anti-static bag by holding the microprocessor at the edges.
  5. Check that all the pins on the underside of the microprocessor are straight.
  6. Locate the socket where the microprocessor must be installed. Raise the lever and flap. Align the notch on the microprocessor with the alignment notch on the motherboard.
  7. Gently, place the microprocessor in the socket.
  8. Press the microprocessor firmly in the socket keeping in mind that no damage is caused to the pins.
  9. Push the lever back down such that it is parallel to the motherboard and locked in place, taking care not to break the lever while lowering it.
  10. Install CPU fan on the microprocessor and connect the fan cable to the CPU fan socket on the motherboard.

Installing the Motherboard:

  1. Attach the ATX plate on the rear of the system case. Ensure that the ports for mouse and keyboard are towards the power supply of the system. Align the plate in the appropriate place by pressing the plate from inside of the cabinet.
  2. Install the standoffs on the system board tray of the cabinet in the appropriate location. The standoffs that come with the motherboard may be of different varieties and must be positioned carefully, so that they are not interchanged.
  3. Place the motherboard on the system board tray of the cabinet after fixing the standoffs. All the standoffs must be visible through the holes in the motherboard.
  4. Attach the motherboard to the drive bay by fixing the different screws. Start with the centremost screw and work outwards in a star pattern. You must not tighten the screws too much, as this will damage or crack the motherboard.
  5. From the system case find the different connectors such as the Hard drive LED, speakers and reset connectors. You can read the instructions from the motherboard manual and follow them.
  6. Fix the power connector from the power supply to the motherboard. Attach the 4 pin connector CPU fan on the motherboard.

Installing the memory

  1. Wear the anti-static wristband or hold a metal part of the chassis before touching any of the system components.
  2. Hold the RAM module by the ends without touching pins or chips. Insert the module straight so that it is perpendicular to the motherboard.
  3. Close the side clips on the RAM and lock the clips.

 Mounting the Hard disk:

  1. Locate the empty drive bay in the system case. Insert the Hard disk into the drive bay and attach screws to hold it in place.
  2. Connect one end of the signal cable to the motherboard and other end of the signal cable to the Hard disk. Signal cable is the SATA cable used to transfer data from hard disk to motherboard and vice versa.
  3. Connect the power cable to the Hard disk. Fix the screws to attach the hard disk to the bay.

Mounting the DVD-writer:

  1. Remove the plastic panel from the system case. Insert the DVD writer in the system case.
  2. Attach screws to fix the DVD writer to the system case. Connect the SATA cable to the DVD writer and other end of the SATA cable to the motherboard.
  3. Connect the power cable to the DVD writer.

Connecting External peripheral:

  1. Connect the Monitor to the VGA port of the computer at the rear end of the cabinet.
  2. If you have a DVI port on the motherboard and a DVI monitor than connect the monitor to the DVI port of the motherboard.
  3. Connect the USB keyboard on the USB connector and the USB mouse on a separate USB connector.
  4. Connect the power cord to the SMPS unit at the rear end of the cabinet. The end of the power cord should be inserted into the wall socket.
  5. Connect the monitor power cord to the monitor and the other end to the wall socket.

Now you can safely power ON your computer.