Can I Change the Processor in My Dell Precision 380?

Written by lucosi fuller
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Can I Change the Processor in My Dell Precision 380?
The processor in a Dell Precision WorkStation 380 can be changed in a few steps. (processor image by Orlando Florin Rosu from

Changing the processor in the Dell Precision WorkStation 380 desktop computer can be done by just about anybody who's willing to attempt the upgrade. A new and more powerful processor will boost the computer's speed by allowing it to run through the information on the computer much faster than an older one. The upgrade is worth the effort, and doing the job yourself will save time and money.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Phillips screwdriver

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  1. 1

    Shut down the computer. Remove all cables and components so that the tower stands alone.

  2. 2

    Move the computer to a clear, flat work space. Lay it on its left side with the front facing toward you.

  3. 3

    Locate the cover release latch on the top part of the back of the computer (as it lays on its side, the latch is on the left side of the computer). Slide it back.

  4. 4

    Lift the cover off of the computer to expose the internal components.

  5. 5

    Touch an unpainted metal surface (the inside of the computer cover works perfectly) to remove the static from your body. Repeat this periodically so you don't introduce static into the computer.

  6. 6

    Locate the heat sink (a large, box-shaped component with vents on it) in the middle of the computer. Loosen the two screws that secure it to the motherboard.

  7. 7

    Rock the heat sink toward the back of the computer. Lift it out of the computer. Now you can see the processor.

  8. 8

    Lift the processor cover and rotate the processor release lever (shaped like a paper clip) to the front of the processor.

  9. 9

    Lift the processor straight up off of its connector.

  10. 10

    Perform the procedure in reverse order to install a new processor and assemble the computer. When you put the new processor on the connector, ensure that pin "1" (labelled with a triangle) is matched with the triangle on the connector.

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