In order to gain access to the CPU, the heat-sink must be removed first. Once the heat-sink is disconnected from the motherboard, the CPU will be exposed with thermal paste on the top of the CPU and the bottom of the heat-sink.

Use this link when applying the thermal paste to the replacement part. How to Apply Thermal Paste


No parts required.

  1. Make sure the computer is unplugged.
    • Make sure the computer is unplugged.

      • Be sure to touch any metal surface with your hand to discharge any static electricity that might have built up.

    • Make sure all auxiliary cords are disconnected from the desktop. If not, remove them using your hands.

    • Set the desktop down horizontally with the front side facing you.

  2. Hold the desktop with two hands by grasping both sides of the desktop.
    • Hold the desktop with two hands by grasping both sides of the desktop.

    • Press the buttons on both sides using your index fingers.

    • Slide the top cover about an inch forward using your thumb to push it towards you.

      • Make sure that the bottom is still secured by both hands.

    • Lay the desktop back on the table and pull the case forward as far as it can go.

    • Lift the cover up and off.

    • Using your hand, grip the Optical Drive and lift it up into a 45 degree angle.

    • Disconnect the power supply cord and the SATA cord using your hands to pull them out.

    • Using your left index finger, lift the upper green tab found on the left side of the green piece.

    • Using your opposite hand, use your fingers to push the back of the drive forward and slide it out away from the desktop.

    • Grasp the optical drive with your right or left hand and pull the drive out towards you.

      • It will help if you lay the device flat in order to remove the drive.

    • Using your right hand, grip the CD drive and lift it up to a 90 degree position.

    • Use your hand, whichever you prefer, to grip the two cords on the CD drive and remove the two cords by pulling up.

    • Repeat the same process to remove the two cords connected to the Hard Drive.

    • Use your right index finger to pull forward the green flap on the side of the hard drive.

      • At the same time as you are lifting the green flap, use your left hand to lift the hard drive up and out.

    • Using your right index finger, press the tab with the green sticker located underneath the power supply.

    • While pressing the tab, lift up the power supply the same way you lifted up the optical drive.

      • You lifted the optical drive by grasping it with the opposite hand while pressing the tab and pulling it outward way from the center of the device.

    • Remove the two cables on the motherboard by grasping the cables with your hand and pulling the cables up and out.

    • Repeat the same process to remove the internal card power cable.

      • This is the same process as preformed when you previously removed the power cables from the optical drive and the hard drive.

      • Some cables may have small clips securing them in place. If so, be sure to press these clips inward using your fingers before pulling them out.

    • Continue to rotate the power supply to a 90 degree angle pointing upward.

    • Gripping the power supply with your hand, lift the power supply up to remove from the desktop.

    • Pull out the tab with the green sticker using your index finger.

    • Using your index finger, pull up the green tab on the left side of the cards.

    • Use your right hand to remove the cable that is attached to the COMS card by grasping the cables and pulling it out.

    • Hold the back frame of the case with your left hand, and grab the larger section of the COMs card, or the bottom card, with your right hand.

    • Wiggle the card a little and pull the COMs card straight out towards you.

      • "Wiggling" the card first will make it easier for you to take the card out instead of just forcing it out.

    • Grab the larger section of the phone line connection card, or the bottom card, with your right hand while your left hand holds the back frame of the case.

      • This is the same process as you previously preformed to remove the COMs card.

    • Wiggle the card a little and pull the phone line connection card straight out.

    • Using your hand, firmly grab the base card by the main green section while holding down the case with your opposite hand.

    • While holding the base card, wiggle it until it is released from the motherboard and pull straight out and set it aside.

    • Using a Torx-Security T-15 screw driver, loosen the screws a little at a time evenly on each screw (process described below):

      • This process is done by slightly unscrewing a screw at one corner and moving to the screw at the diagonal corner next to unscrew slightly.

      • Then move to the opposite corners and repeat the process.

      • Continue until all of the screw are completely removed.

    • Remember to loosen opposite corners first to equalize the pressure on the springs. Do not completely unscrew one screw at one time. Unscrew each screw a little at a time.

    • Once all the screws are loose, grip the heat sink using your hand and lift it up.

    • Gently place the heat sink next the desktop.

    • Using your finger, push the lever, located on the right side of the CPU, down and out.

    • Using your index finger, lift up the bracket surrounding the CPU.

    • Carefully and gently grab opposite sides of the CPU only touching on the outer green portions.

    • Lift the CPU up and off using your hands.

      • Do not touch anything other than the green sides or else you will chance breaking the CPU.


To reassemble your device, follow these instructions in reverse order. The only exception is to apply thermo paste on top of the CPU before putting the heat sink back on.

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Alyssa Briones

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Cal Poly, Team 6-23, Maness Winter 2014 Member of Cal Poly, Team 6-23, Maness Winter 2014


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