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How to build a PC

How to build a PC: a step-by-step guide

Posted on 16 Jan 2013 at 09:00

Ever wanted to learn how to build a PC? Our 11-step guide will walk you through the process

Few things can compare to the satisfaction you get from building your own PC, or upgrading your existing model. With computer prices cheaper than ever, it may seem a false economy, but look deeper and you’ll see the true benefits.

For starters, when you build or upgrade your computer, you choose the components you want to use. In other words, you make sure you end up with the PC that fits your needs. It also means you can pick premium components, making your finished computer more stable and more reliable.

The key advantage of building a PC yourself is that you can quickly take advantage of new technologies. In this feature, for example, we cover how to install and configure a solid-state drive (SSD). Add one of these to your new build – or as an upgrade to your existing PC – and you can boost its performance significantly, speeding up application loading times and the time it takes to start up. Buy a computer off the shelf and you’ll find that this kind of technology is reserved only for the most expensive models.

What’s more, building and upgrading your computer helps you learn how your PC works. Should you run into a problem later on, you’ll be armed with the skill and knowledge to fix it yourself.

Getting to work

The main task you have when building a PC is making sure that you put all the components together correctly so that your new computer works first time.

Our detailed step-by-step advice will help you put any PC together from start to finish.

Step-by-step guide to building a PC
Step 1: How to take a PC case apart
Step 2: How to install a power supply
Step 3: How to install a motherboard
Step 4a: How to install an Intel processor
Step 4b: How to install an AMD processor
Step 5: How to install memory
Step 6: How to fit the internal cables
Step 7a: How to install a hard disk
Step 7b: How to install an SSD
Step 8: How to install an optical drive
Step 9: How to install a graphics card
Step 10: How to install expansion cards
Step 11: How to put a PC case back together

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User comments

Scan Insurance


Scan Computers offer insurance on building a computer. For a small cost they'll insure your build so if you do something wrong you are covered.
Please check with Scan the extent of the cover. When I got it I was building a complete system and all parts were covered. Check with Scan for details.

By simontompkins on 16 Jan 2013

how wonderfully retro!

By sihaz2 on 16 Jan 2013


Looking at the picture I think you need "How to hold a screwdriver: a step-by-step guide"

By andrewhuggett1 on 16 Jan 2013

More links & info for budding builders

I found this video from Newegg (American online retailer) very useful if you're new to building PCs (3-part series):

Also, the excellent tech-site: The Tech Report have also done an in-depth, step-by-step guide too with video and this complements PC Pro's one:

By pbryanw on 16 Jan 2013

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For more details about purchasing this feature and/or images for editorial usage, please contact Jasmine Samra on


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