Many people are under the impression that installing computer hardware is an exclusively technical job. However, with a little perseverance and basic knowledge, anyone can safely and correctly get upgrades installed, faulty or malfunctioning components replaced or even build their own systems. Modern systems are modular units which allow upgrades and different configurations. However, you must undergo a certain amount of learning before you begin. This could be self-learning programs or you could attend a short course.
Before You Start
You should be thorough with the layout of your computer before even thinking of opening it up. Know the reasons why you’re installing the components. You should also be familiar with testing and outcome assessment. Understand the position of the motherboard, RAM, graphics cards, power supply, hard disk/drive, CPU, optical drive, etc. These are all to be found in the tower in a desktop and constitute the actual computer hardware. Other components include network devices and communication devices. Check for the compatibility of your parts and upgrades.
Prior to getting this show on the road, there are some things that should be absolutely done by the book for your own safety.
- Electrostatic discharge is a big concern. It can damage PC hardware, to ensure that you maintain occasional contact with the bare floor. Avoid standing on carpets in your socks.
- Use grounded wrist-bands or an anti-static mat if required.
- Don’t assume that the power is switched off. Make it a habit to check before you begin.
- Never keep liquids or food near your work area. That includes coffee, drinks etc.
- Don’t use unnecessary force to fit components. Don’t try to modify power cables or plugs.
- Ensure your work area is thoroughly prepared for installation. Remove all unnecessary equipment/parts/odds and ends from your work area.
- Ensure that the ambient temperature is cool and there is adequate circulation.
- Never work in moist or damp conditions. Keep the area dust-free.
- Dropping components can damage them. Work in the middle of your table away from the edge and keep components in their boxes till required.
- If you are installing heavy or unwieldy parts, get additional help.
- Never stand or step on components, while trying to reach into the computer.
- Use the right products and use them within their correct ratings.
- Use approved and licensed parts and products.
- Comply with national and local electrical codes.
- Never work during lightning activity or thunderstorms.
- Anti-static wrist-bands
- Non-magnetic star screw-drivers
- Tape measure
- Spirit Level
- Cable tester
- Thoroughly study the instructions, understand them
- Get the work area ready to install your computer hardware.
- Back up all existing data.
- How you go about installing computer hardware depends on the kind of components you want to add.
- Switch off all power sources.
- Open your computer case. This could be through opening a side panel in the tower.
- Carry out the installation.
- Reassemble the computer carefully.
- Test for functionality.
- Restore the data.
Following these simple guidelines can help you to install computer hardware perfectly.