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Fitting A Graphics Card

The graphics card or Video card is a very popular thing the upgrade. Either through want or need you will find that upgrading your graphics card is something you will have to do in the end. Fortunately it's not such a daunting task as you might imagine. As the graphics card is just an expansion card (an important one) it is quite easy to physically swap. What you have to look out for is what type of Video card you have. You will either have an AGP or a PCI card. If you need your card to be the same type as your old Graphics card then look at the slot its in before you start.

The AGP slot is brown and shorter than its PCI counterpart.

Step 1

The first thing you should do is NOT to remove the old graphics card and place the new one in the slot. A common mistake that can lead to small problems later on. The first thing you should be doing is removing the drivers and programs that are associated with the old graphics card.

Right click My Computer > select Properties from the pop up menu and click Device Manager

Step 2

In Device Manager, click the cross next to Display adapters, highlight the entry and click the Remove button at the bottom of the window. When you are prompted to reboot, select No. You should Shutdown your PC manually from the Start Menu.

Step 3

If you have a static band then make sure it is earthed correctly otherwise switch off at the mains, leave your computer plugged in and touch the metal case of the computer to discharge yourself of static electricity. Remember static can damage circuitry.

Step 4

Open your case and remove the retaining screw from your existing graphics card. Hold the card firmly and ease it vertically out of its slot.

Step 5

Insert your new card in the slot in the same vertical manner and ensure that it is seated completely within the slot. Most cards will refuse to operate if not installed correctly.

Step 6

Boot up your computer with the case open [you may need to access the card again]. If you see the bootup sequence then your card is working. All you need to do now is install the drivers.

Should you encounter beeps on booting up, unplug the power and remove the card again. Use some compressed air to blow on the slot and replace the card. If this doesn't work then try the card in another machine or get onto technical support. Some cards do arrive faulty so it may not be your fault.

Step 7

When you enter Windows, the auto-detect wizard should prompt you to install your drivers. Follow the instructions on screen and install the drivers from the CDROM provided by your card manufacturer.

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