Setting up your personal computer system is much easier than you think. Most of the time, especially for those who are not technologically advanced, all those wires and cables will look quite foreign.
Fortunately, with a little guidance, anyone can hook up a new computer in just a few minutes. If you think you're ready, proceed to step one!
Step 1: Gather the Necessary Parts
For a basic desktop computer setup, you will need the following pieces:
- Computer Tower with Operating System pre-installed by the manufacturer (usually Windows) (top-left of photo)
- Monitor (top-right of photo)
- Keyboard (bottom-left of photo)
- Power cord
- VGA or HDMI cable (used for computer screen)
Step 2: Setting Up the Tower & Monitor
Take the tower and gently place it on your desktop or tabletop. If you plan to hook your computer to your monitor using a traditional VGA cable, have that handy. If you chose to go the high definition route, grab your HDMI cable.
Using the photo above as a reference (I blacked out the other inputs in the picture so as not to confuse you), locate the input for your cable and insert into the hole.
Place your monitor on the table and connect the other end of the cable into the back of the computer screen.
Step 3: Connecting Your Peripherals
Believe it or not, you're almost at the finish line!
Get your peripherals ready... and no, I don't mean your peripheral vision! Put your mouse and keyboard on the table and determine the connection type. They could have a USB connector which has a rectangular end or they could possess a "PS/2" connector which would be indicated by either a purple or green plug.
Find the appropriate port to connect your devices and plug them in accordingly. I provided a photo above of the rear of my computer's tower so you can see an example of where the mouse and keyboard might go.
* Note: You may want to include computer speakers or a microphone in your setup but I lack those additions and could not provide pictures for you. I assumed that talking about these items, the multi-conductor wires that power them, where they plug in, etc. would only add more confusion, especially without a diagram or photo to assist you. If you have these items and need help setting them up, feel free to contact me!
Step 4: Your Ergonomic Work Station and Powering Up
Finally, plug the power cords from the rear of your computer tower and monitor into an outlet. If you have a surge protecting power strip available, I highly recommend utilizing one to prevent your system from being shorted out by static, storms, etc.
Now that your computer's main components are connected, you're ready to set them up in a way that's "ergonomic". Meaning, you'll have your monitor, keyboard, and mouse positioned in a way that won't put stress on your wrists, back, or vision.
The pointers below for setting up your workstation are taken from the OSHA (Occupational Health and Safety Administration) website. Your body and computer system should be positioned so that the following can be achieved:
- Place the top of your monitor at or a little below your eye level
- Your head and neck should be comfortable and in-line with your torso
- Shoulders should be relaxed
- Keep your elbows close to your body
- Support your lower back
- Your hands and wrists should be in line with your forearms
- Allow plenty of room for your mouse and keyboard
- Keep your feet flat on the floor
Once you've gotten comfortable, go ahead and turn your computer on! The tower will usually have a button right on the front but can sometimes be accompanied by a switch on the rear of the tower that needs to also be flipped on. The computer monitor will also have a similar power button situation (button on front sometimes accompanied by switch on the rear).
Step 5: Enjoy Your New PC Setup!
Hopefully, you've got power to your monitor and the tower has turned on. Your computer will take some time to boot up especially if it's a brand new computer thats's fresh from the manufacturer. There will be a series of installations and updates that the computer may start automatically.
During this setup process, you may be prompted to follow on-screen instructions but that will be just as easy as following this Instructable (or easier!) This is when you'll find out if you've correctly connected your mouse and keyboard. You'll probably be asked to type your name or other information and click the "Next" button a number of times.
I'm glad I was able to provide you with the necessary steps needed to complete this task! For more tips and tricks, be sure to add this Instructable and myself to your "favorites". Good luck with your new technology!