Building my first computer

During the summer, I spent most of my time doing yard work and other odd jobs to raise money to build a computer. I enjoy playing video games, and my current computer could not run most of the new games that I wanted to play. My old computer just did not hold to the test of time. There was not many challenges, but the ones that were present I had a tough time acomplishing.

I think that this even will change my life, and how i will overocme various tasks in the future. Chapter 1: The Start of It all I was in awe staring at a complicated mess of heat sinks and circuit boards. Intimidated, but excited. I was determined to finish building my computer. Not knowing where to begin, I decided to just unpack all the parts and set them down where they won’t get lost. I could not wait to get going.

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Shortly after I unpacked all the components, I just sat there, looking at how nice, new and shiny they looked. Eager to get going, I started searching through the parts like a hound scavenging for a meal. I mentioned to my dad, ?Wow, hard to believe these parts can make a function computer.? ?e replied with a simple smile and I started my task. I was amazed that I was able to afford so many of these components in just a few months from money I earned from yard work, I was nearly shaking with excitement. From there, I prepped the mother to be placed into the case.

The case is a metal case that holds all the parts. This step wasn’t much hard, just scary, especially the CPU. Setting it in the socket was a breeze, but I had to clamp down the retention bracket, this brought a lot of stress on the motherboard and I was worried it would crack, or harm another component. It put stress on the motherboard because it had to be able to clamp down the cpu in the bracket so it will not fall out. I have as good of motor skills as a blind pig with no arms, so, I am pretty sure I bent a few pins or headers. Not only that, but I got a really bad shock installed the ram, placing my hand when I was not discharged from static caused an arc.

?Why are motherboards not grounded? Couldn’t this kill someone if they short out a capacitor?” I asked my dad ?If the motherboard was grounded, almost any type of current that made contact with the board would damage many of the components.? he replied. Now that I got the motherboard prepped, I had to install the power supply (PSU). This was not hard to do at all, just place it in the correct area and screw down. From there, I set my SSD into a bracket and connected it to the PSU, again with not being observant, I put the power cable in the wrong pinout and nearly shorted out my whole system.

I was thinking At least nothing is on fire, or cracked. Seeing as I struggled with some of the simplest steps, I knew I was going to be up for a challenge pretty soon. Next, I had to do the most challenging parts of this process. I had to install the motherboard and finish connecting all the power, and front panel cables. To set the motherboard in was somewhat simple, I just had to install standoffs and set the board in. During this process, my hands shook as hard , which almost caused me to break something.

At this point in time, I was as mad as a kid who’s candy was stolen by a sly bird. I could not fit the motherboard into the case without damaging anything. My dad explained, ?Maybe if you calm down a bit, you could think of a better solution, or be able to set the motherboard easier too.? The back of the motherboard kept hitting the standoffs and almost chipped off some of the solders. I felt the urge to rush, I tried speeding up but that did nothing to help my situation.

It felt like something was just barely in my reach, knowing that I need to be determined, I decided to come up with a makeshift solution so, I just set the board into the I/O plate and screwed it down. This brought more challenges ahead, and only solved a short term problem. The reason this created more problems is because if the motherboard is directly on the case, it? easier to be damaged and covered up some holes to route cables. This is the part that it messed up, plugging in the cables. I composed myself and was able to accomplish this, and make it look nice.

I felt like an artist looking on their masterpiece. I thought that was quite a feat, being able to quickly calm down and connect pieces of complicated circuitry with demoralizing obstacles. After I finished connecting the key components, I realized I forgot a key component. The graphics card. The graphics card is what gives the system majority of the graphical performance, like rendering, or gaming. I shortly went from a pretty good mood to a deep moment of despair.

Having to untie a large sum of cables then ruining my near perfectly managed cables that allow clean airflow and did not clutter the case. I was thinking, Maybe I could improve on the placement, this shouldn’t take too long. Everything worked out afterwards, and I have a completed computer. My dad mentioned in a sarcastic tone, ?Wow, isn’t this neat? Perfect cable management if I do say so myself.? I chuckled and replied, ?At least it’s not a rats nest. Now, this was the moment I get to see what I have done – whether I completely ruined $800 of plastic and solder or made the biggest accomplishment in my life.

My stomach felt like it turned inside out. Attaching a cable from my monitor to my computer, I pressed the power button, my face lit up… the computer went to its UEFI. I thought to myself How did I accomplish this task with relative ease? I am very thankful for this moment, it taught me many life skills, one of the most impactful of the few is that getting angry at problems just makes solving the issue harder and does more harm than good. I hope that I am able to apply these new skills in the real world sometime in the future. This will always be an important part of my life, I think this situation and accomplishment will be stuck in my head for awhile.