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Tip: use spacers when you upgrade a motherboard

How to troubleshoot a motherboard upgrade

QUESTION I’ve had some serious problems with my recently upgraded computer. The display won’t detect the PC and the hard drive LED flashes randomly for a moment after pressing the power button but then stops. I upgraded my processor, case, motherboard and RAM according to the manufacturers’ instructions, except I didn’t use spacers for the motherboard. My friend did the same, but had no problems following the upgrade. I’m only 13, so I’m getting seriously stressed. I haven’t been able to find a solution online. Hugh Scott

HELPROOM ANSWER Firstly, and most importantly, you need to use spacers on your motherboard. They aren’t an additional requirement in the building of a PC; they are essential. Spacers keep the motherboard separated from the (usually) metal PC chassis. Without them, the motherboard will short out against the case and is likely to suffer permanent damage. Your CPU, RAM and other components could also be affected.

You need to strip down your PC and fit the spacers, then reassemble it. If it boots, you’ve got off lucky. If not, you’ll have to purchase a new motherboard – and possibly a processor and RAM as well.

See also: How to fix everything: the ultimate guide to fixing technology

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