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How To Install a Processor

Add a CPU

It’s now time to crack open the case and get down to business. Don’t rush any of the following steps because you don’t want to damage any of your components. So, take a deep breath, and let’s start.

Before you begin.
If you’re upgrading with some kind of OverDrive or upgrade kit, be sure to read the instructions included with the kit before doing anything. All kits are different, and the instructions provided may differ from those we present below. Prior to opening your computer, see if the kit comes with some kind of utilities diskette that you have to run before the upgrade.

Configuring the motherboard.
So we don’t forget to do it later, we’ll start off by having you reconfigure your motherboard, if necessary. Motherboards are made to operate with many different components, and they use jumper switches to make sure the right signals are flowing at the right speeds to the right places. Jumpers are simple tiny switches on the board; when the jumper connects two pins, the switch is “on,” and when the jumper is removed, the switch is “off.”

Some newer motherboards are “jumperless,” which means you can change these configurations using software. This will have to be done later, so skip this step for now if you know you have a jumperless motherboard. Other motherboards have dual inline package (DIP) switches, which are small sliding switches set in rows on the motherboard. Most of the time, however, changing jumpers means pulling tiny pieces of plastic off the ends of little pins.

While this could be the trickiest part of the upgrade, some installations will require no reconfiguring at all. The hard part is knowing which jumpers to change. Some kits might specify that no jumper changes are necessary, but most upgrades will require you to change at least the bus and processor speed jumpers.

There is no way to guess here which jumpers should be changed because every board is different. You will have to dig out your computer or motherboard manual and see what it says on this point. Sometimes the information is printed right on the motherboard or on a sticker inside the case. If you don’t have anything like that on hand, first try to find the information on the manufacturer’s Web site, and if that fails, call or e-mail technical support.

Your manual or other instructions may include a list of common CPUs and their jumper settings. If it only talks about specific processor speeds, you will need to know your new chip’s actual clock speed rather than the speed at which it is rated.

Before actually changing any jumpers, write down the present settings; if something goes wrong with the new processor, you can return everything to the previous settings. Try drawing little pictures, with a notation marking which side is up.

To change a jumper, carefully pull up on the plastic part with your fingernails or needle-nosed pliers. Figure out which pins to put the jumper back on and slide it in the correct position.

Socket or slot. Now you’re ready to take out your old processor and put in the new unit. The steps differ depending on the type of mounting for which the processor is designed. The older Socket 7 is square,

Socket 7, ZIFThis is a  Zero Insertion Force (ZIF) socket. ZIF sockets began their popularity with later 486 models and are the type of the older Pentiums Socket 7 

IF YOU ARE UPGRADING USING THIS SOCKET  (click here) and the newer Slot 1 is rectangular and stands on its end.

Good CPU RetentionThis is a slot 1 socket.  and works the same regardless of whether you are using a   Pentium II, Pentium III, a Slot 1 Celeron, or a K7.



Socket upgrade. At this point we’ll diverge our instructions to deal with issues unique to both socket upgrades: