Overclock.net › How To's › How On Earth Do I Build A Computer Lesson 2

How on EARTH Do I Build a Computer?? >>Lesson 2 >>


This is my second lesson on computer building. Assuming you have read the lesson 1, I will continue verbatim.

If as advised in in the introduction, the many PC components, are purchased, arrived and are all ready to be assembled...we shall continue.

Next is the power supply fitting.. the power supply has four as I call them 'furrells' four holes for screws, the top rear of the case has four matching holes, these holes line up together so screws can attach the power supply to the case.

here is a picture.

the case also has these hole alignments, to hold the power supply to the case.

not every case is the same, some cases put the power supply at the top and some put it to the bottom. the former is considered a MIDI case, it is a common type of case for general usage, specifically media, while the latter is considered a gaming case, for playing games on your PC.

here is a picture of a gaming case.

and pictured here are the holes to be aligned with the power supply furrells. Note that the power supply need to be placed upside down to fit here.. this does not effect the component.

Now with the power supply correctly installed, we can move on to the optical or 'CD' drive installation.

On the front or 'face' of the case, there are metal mesh or solid small panels, these are removable and is where your optical drive will sit.. I am sure you have seen this before on other PC's.

On the side of the 'slot' for the optical drive, there may be a clasp, this is to hold the optical drive in place, especially while in transit.

The clasps are used for the optical drive, hard drive and the solid state drive. also line up the holes to the clasp, then pop it in place to hold the drive, this is a common system but there are many different ones I won't go in to here.

Once your drives and power supply are in place, we can attach the motherboard, we assembled in lesson 1.

The rear panel for the motherboard also needs to be inserted, there is a rectangular gap at the back that should fit it nicely. the rear panel most likely came with your motherboard and is a shiny rectangle.

the motherboard has holes and the case has holes that can attach the motherboard to the case.. you should have several brass screw looking things.. I also call these furrells because that is their job.. to hold screws in place. attach 7 or 8 furrells to your case rear wall, however these must match the holes on your motherboard.. just do your best.

here is a picture of an inserted motherboard.

once installed, we can attach the the graphics card to the motherboard, the black slot in the picture above has notches that fit the graphics card, align them and pop into place. once the graphics card is installed to the motherboard secure it the case also with the clasp, or if not then a screw.

This concludes lesson 2.

In the final lesson we will focus on the cable attachments and the operating system.

:side note:

Big thanks to guero810 for the pics.

Introduction : http://www.overclock.net/a/how-on-earth-do-i-build-a-computer-beginners-guide
Lesson 1: http://www.overclock.net/a/how-on-earth-do-i-build-a-computer-lesson-1
Lesson 3: http://www.overclock.net/a/how-on-earth-do-i-build-a-computer-final-lesson-3

Comments (14)

Thanks for this i am a first time builder !
Looking for any info and ,looking forward to part 3 .
cheers from Tasmania
Welcome to OCN!

And np ekymental.

thanks for the encouragement.
I hope, in lesson #3 you have a chance to touch on the front panel header. I just moved an ASUS mobo from a micro tower to a Zalman Z11 and the front panel hookups were a little confusing. I found a link to a developer page that helped me. Sorry I no longer have the link but I found it with a Google search for "front panel connections"
thanks for the many encouragements fieldho

I will put a special section on the Front Panel Headers just coz you asked.

thanks again.
I've built systems in the past. While I knew alot before I started building, from working on systems for years, I feel that this is a great way to gather some basic information on your computer in a short amount of time with maximum ease. I also think it is great that you mention the brass "furrels", though a user might need additional pictures to see how that lines up. great job!
What pictures do you need? I just built my new i5 system and it's still clean and photogenic, and I have piles of old computer parts around I can throw something together from just to get pics.
I was reading this to see if you came up with something interesting...
You are doing a fairly good job with construction of a personal build, this is useful in itself but leaves out what I think of as the first and most important step (you touched on this step a little)
STEP #1=component selection
Although before you even do this little number you have to decide on application/budget

I am also wondering if you are going to go into platform stability verification i.e RAM stability and CPU stability. Although I have never had a problem with CPU stability at stock settings, it seems that RAM modules do not have this kind of track record (I have also had two sets of RAM modules that boot up to Windows fine but don't even come close to stable when stressed even with higher voltage settings).
One set was a high perf OCZ dual channel set that would only run stable with settings below the stock settings (this may actually have been due to MB since RAM stock settings were rather high)
The other set was Corsair XMS 2x4GB set that I never got to run without throwing memtest errors. (I didn't try much with that set and simply used another kit to run that build)

If you are having pic troubles you could just run searches on google in the images tab, most of that is useable under fair use (I think, maybe OCN has rules restricting pic useage.... other than safe for work)
Hi Tom89194o all that seems a bit complicated and daunting to a person starting.. in the introduction I told the prospective builder to buy a bundle off ebay.. we all have been there.. and they don't need to know everything from day 1.

A MIDI case reasonable 80+ power supply.. should see them right.. and as far as graphics goes.. everything is PCIE 2.0 compat (at least) these days. it's really just to get them started. ...one day down the line.. perhaps ill do an intermediate course.. dealing with an intro to OC and stability and OS's.. but not now man. kindly..your points are good.. if..it was intermediate.


Cool enough, I was just wonderin about your entire objective.
Also, I missed the importance of the suggestion to use a bundled kit. Mostly cause that takes out a large portion of the fun of PC building process in my opin.
I still think, even if you don't go into detail, that mentioning stability testing as an important factor for the following reasons.
-Even if the individual parts test fine post production, they are shipped and handled physically until and during final assembly
-Even if the computer makes it all the way through assembly, OS install, and 100 Boot cycles, a slightly flaky RAM module wont cause the slightest bit of trouble until it is run hard enough or hot enough to throw a wrench into the works. (Then you run around in circles cause your comp, that ran for 6 months to a year with no trouble, wont run your brand new game for long without nose diving)
I don't mean to be picky or to say you have to do anything I say, but running memtest and prime 95 a couple times overnight is rather simple and can save anyone from some reeeaaalllly annoying headaches. Although I will freely admit that running stress tests is way more important to someone who is overclocking than someone who bought a bundled package.

I am gonna be a little mean here though.. (AND keep in mind this is my personal OP and I have been building my own rigs for the last 6 years)
If you want to build a PC, a bundle is probably not a good way to go...... and if you do buy a bundle make sure it lists the individual parts by model name/#
Also, ask yourself these three questions
-Who put this bundle together, did they know what they are doing?
-Will this bundle make the kind of computer you want/need? (a gaming rig with a top of the line Intel processor but mid grade GPU is probably not a great way to use your money, etc.)
-when was this bundle assembled? (am I buying parts for 20-40% more than their retail because the price point of the bundle was set 6 months ago?)

Since the knowledge requirements to answer these questions isn't far from the same knowledge requirements to selecting your own parts, I would opt for learning enough to select my own parts.....

However, "TO EACH HIS OWN," and good luck to anyone learning this little trade from scrap like I have.ST
It seems I have wandered extraordinarily from BEGINNER'S guide and I apologize for my mouth that runs at both ends at some times.......

One final point I forgot to bring up...
Review articles of PC components are both good and bad. This depends on the methods used and the person behind the desk, if you read any article on a topic read others on the same topics and compare.
The same is true of Newegg reviews, I would suggest reading lots of newegg reviews on individual parts. BUT be careful, sometimes problems arise from the user himself, pay attention to the reviews where something went wrong, this can teach you what not to do...

I also found this discussion on DIY bundles which touches on nice points, although it is from 2009, so the comp are somewhat outdated.

on a lighter note, I read this one a few years back...
"...I remember killing a 512mb stick of ram. It wouldn't quite fit in the slot, but a little filing of the notches and voila... nothing... ever again!"
It can be found at this link, as well as an article that outlines some things to be wary of while putting the parts together.

I think I should stop hijacking your post dava4444
hehe.. its fine Tom89194o man

maybe we could write the intermediate guide together some day..and that's a nice save on filing down the notches! I was tempted myself when I started building hehe. ..but if I do that now, then I have to list every danger.. which could take a huge amount of time to write .. and a huge amount for new hopeful builder to read... you get me right?

cool man.
Yea I definitely understand about the ridiculous length that a COMPLETE guide could get to, and I am starting to think that it would sort of be like trying to write a COMPLETE beginner's guide for programming......
In other words you either write something "short and sweet" and leave it at that, or you just give yourself a bunch of headaches.
I say this because the best way to learn something that you are going to do your own way anyhow is to just dive in and try different things to see how they work for you and the situation.
For Example....
I could have read two or three books on programming in picbasic and still have had to spend the same amount of time writing my first programs since the problems I had probably would not have been outlined. Such as the following
I had some serious nightmares with the compiler that took a program written in BASIC and made machine code for microchip PIC controllers. "Random sections of my code no longer work???!!!! But I didn't change ANYTHING for the code that no longer works!!! I only modified an earlier section that does not have anything to do with the section that no longer works, BUT the newly modified section of code works FIIIIIINE!!!" I eventually learned that the compiler was not making the machine code properly(I think) due to some type of "page" partition in the program memory space for the 16F88 chips. Once the program is large enough to hit the page boundary then maybe a section is no longer assembled or read correctly. A week or two later, some other groups started running into this problem........ I told them to use another model chip, or to jumble the order of their code sections to try to drop the page boundary in just the right place. Reaaaally big problem for learners cause you don't know if it is hardware, your code, or this wonderful BUG in the compiler/chip. I finally understand some people that HATE BUGS!!!!
Hi Just to say.. I haven't updated this for the last lesson. been super busy, other things going on and I am going away for a while. Just felt I owed yous guys an update on the last lesson.
When you update this... may I suggest a few additional tips
- the metal rear panel SHOULD fit snugly/tightly in the hole (push from the inside, check that the holes will line up with the jacks on the motherboard).. don't leave it loose... try fitting one side in first and then pushing as hard as necessary to get the other side in... you can use a fair amount of pressure on the edges with your thumbs without damaging anything
- Now is a good time to check if the power supply wires are too short... extensions are available, but add one more connection to get dirty... just don't try to stretch the cable... get a different power supply or an extension. Remember you will need enough slack to route around video cards, etc.
- the furrels under the motherboard are extra important anywhere you might be pushing down in the future such as under memory slots, SATA, USB, PCI, etc. Generally anywhere there is a hole in the motherboard for a screw... it would be preferable to have a furrel and screw. You do NOT want brass furrels in any EXTRA case holes because they might short out the motherboard

hope this helps.
Overclock.net › How To's › How On Earth Do I Build A Computer Lesson 2