Introduction: How to Build a Computer

Lots of people would rather buy a computer than build one, but I prefer to build because it can be a lot cheaper if you know what you're doing!

Step 1: Parts

Here is a list of parts you will need to build a computer. You can go to or, etc. to get these parts.

  • ATX tower (or mid-tower) case
  • Power Supply
  • CPU
  • ATX Motherboard
  • RAM / Memory
  • Graphics/video card

Step 2: Motherboard

Once you have all of your parts, you need to put your computer together. But I would personally put everything together on the Motherboard before installing it into the computer because of the small components that are put into it. NOTICE: Make sure you do not let any static discharge onto the motherboard for they are very sensitive to electricity! Use a ground cord or mat while working and do not work on any fabrics that produce static electricity! When done, put the motherboard in the case with the I/O ports sticking out of the case. MAKE SURE YOU DON'T PICK THE MOTHERBOARD UP BY THE HEATSINK! (The piece with a bunch of the metal fins attached) The motherboard should then screw into place with the screws tha

Step 3: Installing Memory (RAM)

Next, you need to install your memory. (Or RAM) There are long slots for these and will only go in one way. If you have more than two slots, refer to your motherboard manual for specifics on which ones to insert into. Make sure the clips are up, and push RAM into the slots all the way until the clips snap into the RAM.

Step 4: Installing the Processor

The processor is the brains of the computer, so be extra careful with it! There is a metal square on top of where the processor goes. There is also a metal lever next to it, so pull the lever away and up to loosen the metal square and lift it up. Next, rotate the processor so that the notches on the processor line up with the notches in the open slot. ***NOTE*** If the processor doesn't go in, PICK IT BACK UP! Don't slide it in or put any force on it whatsoever for the pins can easily be bent! Once inside, push the metal cover back on and push the lever back into place.

Step 5: Heatsink

All heatsinks and cooling systems need thermal paste to conduct heat properly from the processor to the cooling system. Make sure you do not touch it either. Otherwise they screw in any way so whatever is convenient to the motherboard.

Step 6: Installing the Power Supply

This is pretty easy. Just screw in where there is a big square hole and with the wires inside the case. Move them out of the way because they can be a nuisance.

Step 7: Wiring the Front Panel

Every computer has a Power and reset button and two LED lights, and audio jacks (AC'97) Look in the manual to where the location is. The motherboard will also display where to plug these in.

Step 8: Mounting Hard Drive

This is also very easy. There is a slot for this and it slides right in so you can screw it in easily. The case also comes with a cord (SATA) Plug that into the SATA 1 port and you should be done with the hard drive.

Step 9: Plug It In!

Plug in the 2 main motherboard power cords, the 20/24 pin and the cable coming from the power supply will let you take off 4 pins to use in a 20 pin motherboard. Then plug in either the 4 or 8 pin connector and you should be able to turn your computer on!

Step 10: Installing an Operating System (OS)

I would prefer to use a USB for this because it is easier to me. You just plug it in and then the computer should start going through the installation process for you. You should be all done with your build!