backup procedures, maintenance procedures, security
procedures, and so on.
For performing diagnostics and for troubleshooting
problems, there may be separate manuals or the
information may be included in an appendix of an
owner/user manual. Become familiar with the kinds of
operator/user diagnostics you can perform. In this way,
you may be able to identify and isolate problems. Error
messages also provide information to help you solve
problems. Usually, an appendix or special section will
include a list with some explanation.
Most of the hardware components have built-in
system checks that occur when the particular piece of
equipment is powered on. If an error condition occurs
during the self test, an error code or message is
displayed. You will use this code or message to begin
the troubleshooting. Get the manual and look up the
error, this will give the cause of the problem and an
action to take to fix the problem and clear the error
There are several commercial
troubleshooting and information software packages
available to use in performing system checks, each of
which will include an operating manual on how to run
and interpret the results. Remember to use the
associated manual for whatever troubleshooting that
INSPECTING THE COMPONENTS
Once the computer components arrive, the first
thing that needs to be done is to inspect the components.
This is accomplished in several steps:
Inspect the boxes for damage before opening
After opening the box, check to be sure
everything is there (e.g., operating instructions,
cables, and cords).
Remove the components from the box, looking
for damage (e.g., cracks in the case, loose
connections, missing parts).
After checking over each component and making
sure everything is there, it is time to begin connecting
SETTING UP THE HARDWARE
The first thing you must do when setting up the
hardware is to read the installation instructions. They
will tell you what cables belong to what equipment and
how to hook up the equipment properly. In the
following paragraphs, we will give you an idea of what
is involved when installing a microcomputer having a
separate monitor, keyboard, and printer.
Normally, each device comes with its own power
line cable (except the keyboard, which gets its power
from the system unit). You plug each into an electrical
Be sure all power cables are polarized,
grounded, shielded, and have a three-conductor
This brings us to another very
important subject, power requirements.
the range of 100 to 130
can operate on voltages in
volts or 200 to 230 volts
alternating current (at). They are able to accommodate
either voltage through the use of a selectable switch
called a voltage or line select switch. The voltage
switch on our particular microcomputer is located on
the back panel of the system unit (see figure 1-25).
Changing the voltage switch to a different
setting, say from 115 volts to 230 volts, would
also require that the power cable be changed.
Do NOT attempt to do this on your own;
instead, have it done by a qualified electrical
If youre not sure of the line voltage that is being
supplied to the electrical outlets in your work space,
have a qualified electrician check them for you.
Further, it is recommended that the outlet you select to
support your system be used only by the microcomputer
system and its peripheral devices.