The socket on your computer's motherboard determines which types of processors your computer is able to use. CPUs that connect to the socket LGA 775 retention bracket aren't compatible with the socket 478 retention bracket, and so on. If you want to switch processor types and use Intel Pentium 4 or Celeron processors that attach to a socket 478 bracket, the only option is to disconnect your existing motherboard and install one compatible with a socket 478.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Challenging
Things you need
- Phillips screwdriver
- Socket 478 motherboard
- Socket 478 processor
- Thermal paste
Power down your computer and remove all the cables connected to the case. Move the case on its side so the side panel is facing you. Loosen and remove both of the Phillips screws at the left side of the panel.
Pull the panel off the case and set it aside. Find the cooling fan over the LGA 775 socket near the middle of the motherboard inside the case. Unlock the fan by pushing down the metal locking clamps. Pull the fan's cable off the motherboard and lift the fan and its metal heat sink component out of the computer.
Pull up the metal load lever at the bottom of the LGA 775 socket. Pull the square LGA 775 CPU upward and set it outside the case. Find the green memory modules to the right of the socket and unlock them by pressing down the plastic retaining tabs at both ends. Pull the modules straight up and set them outside the computer.
Locate the metal power supply box at the left side of the case and the disk drive bays at the right side of the case. Disconnect the cables running from the metal power supply, the hard drive and the optical drive to the ports on the motherboard.
Remove each of the motherboard locking screws along the edges of the motherboard. (The number of screws varies between motherboard models.) Pull the entire motherboard to the right so all the ports unlock from the case.
Lift up the left side of the motherboard and pull it out of your computer. Slide the new socket 478 motherboard into the case and ensure that the ports on the left side are lined up with the holes on the back of the case. Push the motherboard toward the left and install the locking screws.
Put back together each of the components you replaced earlier on your new motherboard. Reassemble the access panel and plug in your computer's cables.
Tips and warnings
- If your computer has expansion cards installed, you also need to remove those prior to pulling out the motherboard. The expansion cards are positioned near the lower-left corner of the motherboard. Remove the screw holding the card to the back of the case and pull the card upward.
- Always use thermal paste when installing a new processor to prevent the CPU from overheating. Squeeze out a small amount of paste on top of the processor after setting it on the socket 478 retention bracket and spread it across the processor.
- Static electricity is capable of sparking from your hands and destroying your computer's hardware, whether it be the motherboard or any of the parts attached to the motherboard. Touch your fingers to the unpainted metal ports on the back of the computer's case to ground yourself and get rid of any static electricity build up.
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