Normally I go to Hard Forum. But they are a little heavy-handed over there, by that I mean you get excellent help, are told exactly what to do, but nobody ever explains the why. You are supposed to just nod your head and say thank you. Secondly the site is down, has been for a day or so. Thought since I had an account here I would see how the Dev Shed Computer Hardware community is.
So here is the backstory, in brief. Posted a few threads over a few years at HF requesting hardware suggestions. Each time things fell through and I never got my parts, or all of them, or something. This time I got my parts and just spend the last two days, including today, getting it all together. Now I do have some experience, on older computers, in a college class I aced (I think I just got A's in it) about 7-9 years ago now. But this time was my first with new hardware, flying solo. Just about to delve into the murky waters of the computer bios.
OK, so on to the questions... First one is I have installed a Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo aftermarket cooler (heatsink and fan) onto my Intel 1155 socket i5 CPU. I used a ceramic paste, probably too much, and I was stupid and removed the heatsink once, so I may end up with bubbles. Hope not. Followed the included instructions, pretty sure I have it all on right, even if I used too much paste. But the thing was able to move around after I tightened everything down. I mean I could rotate it a little each way. Did I do something wrong here, or is that just how things will be until the paste hardens?
Speaking of the CPU, I had to use a lot of force to snap that bracket in place. I could hear noises coming from the board. I had it dropped into place correctly, notches lined up, bracket pushing against that screw/nut thing. Never installed an Intel before, so I was just wanting to rest my mind about this.
Fan placement... Using a $59.00 Lian Li PC-K65 case. Has 2 120mm fans in front, one in back, dust filters on the front fans, and a set of raised rubber rails over a vent/dust filter for the PSU. Installed the PSU with the fan towards the bottom. Installed the Cooler Master with the fan facing towards the front. Video card fans are also facing down. Hard drives are on the bottom, so the upper-most fan in front can blow on the video card. Do you think this is a good fan setup? Won't be overclocking, not using liquid cooling, so this is all the cooling the case will get inside for now.
OK, that covers everything for the moment. The computer does not post beep. I think I dropped the speaker one too many times... The BIOS does load up however and a I get to the error looking for something to boot. The debug LED on the mobo says 38. Need to look that up. I'll attach a picture as a reference point if I can.
I will be installing Windows 7 64 bit, followed by Windows XP SP3. I think that's how you have to dual-boot install. Newer OS first. Nothing fancy in my system like an SSD. But as I said I will be going over the BIOS first. If you have any suggestions here, I am all ears. My MOBO is an MSI 77A-GD65 gaming board.
Appreciate your advice, feedback and help!