Operating System Installation Checklist

Before installing an Operating System for a System Unit, one must adhere to the fact that not all machines are the same and that will include software and hardware compatibilities. Aside from that, we as computer hardware servicing technicians should be able to establish a strong background in the proper procedure of installing and operating system. In some occasion, a computer technician is satisfied with the plain installation as long as it works fine. As a responsible computer hardware servicing technician, one must consider to use utilities, ensure data security is met and the computer should be properly optimized to make an ease of use for the client. We will be listing down the things a computer technician should do or check upon when installing an operating system.

Operating System Installation Checklist for Computer Technicians

1. The most important thing a computer technician should watch for is to do backup on the files. Files are worth more than the computer you are or will be fixing. It is best to secure the files of your client's computer before beginning a troubleshooting process. Ask your client what files are necessary to backup.

2. Always bring the most crucial tools specially if you are an on-call computer technician. Here are the most important tools or things an on-call technician should always bring.

a. Installers and Utility Softwares
b. External Drive (for backup storage)
c. CD ROM or preferably a DVD ROM much better if it is portable
d. SATA and IDE (both 40 and 80 pin) cables
e. Power Cable
f. PSU Checker
g. Long Philip Screw Driver
h. A set of small screw driver and a torx screw driver set as well
i. A wide bristle brush
j. Tube of thermal grease or paste
k. Rubber eraser
l. Test peripheral like a RAM or a Video Card
m. Penlight

This will all come handy with a backpack

3. Before doing an Operating System Re-installation or Installation, confirm first that the system unit really needs to have a fresh operating system. Check and verify the integrity of the RAM, Video Card, Power Supply, and the HDD before proceeding the installation.

4. After the integrity of the peripheral has been checked and has done a file backup, consider doing a driver backup if there is no Motherboard Support CD.

5. Start the OS installation.

6. After the OS installation is finished, install your motherboard and device drivers.

7. Have your HDD share some of its space for the RAM. This is virtual memory for Windows and Swap file for Linux. In Linux, you set it during installation and in Windows you set it up at the system properties.

8. Do registry optimization.

9. Have Sysedit optimized (works well with XP) by:
a. Press "Win+R" and type in "sysedit"
b. Look for the "system.ini" tab and locate [386enh]. Make a line after [386enh] by pressing "enter" then type "Irq14=4096". Do not include "" and this is CASE SENSITIVE. Save it by going to "File" then "Save".

10. Customize the Start Menu for better navigation and reduce clutter.

11. Install the necessary softwares like MS Office, Media Player Updates, Yahoo Msgr, Google Chrome, Adobe Reader and other programs.

12. Install Disk Defragmenter like SmartDefrag and Registry Defragmenter like RegCure.

13. Delete caching files by:
a. Press "Win+R"
b. Type "Prefetch" then as the windows opens, delete it by pressing "CTRL+A" then "SHIFT+Del".

14. Run Disk Defragmenter. Run it twice then restart your computer.

15. Run Registry Defragmenter. Run it twice and restart your computer.

16. Remove some unnecessary startup items (not harmful to your system)like yahoo messenger, adobe update, skype, and etc by :
a. Press "Win+R" then type "msconfig" as the System Configuration Utility window appears go to Startup tabs and uncheck the items not necessary for startup.
b. Restart your computer.

17. Perform Disk Cleanup by:
a. Press "Win+R" then type "cleanmgr" Select drive to clean. Follow the instructions provided.

18. Set or Create a System Restore Point by:
a. Press "Win+R" then type or copy this "%systemroot%\system32\restore\rstrui"
b. Follow the instruction provided then restart the computer

19. Disable AutoUpdates.

20. Install a known good antivirus and restart your computer.

You see, the antivirus has to be installed last. This is the method is being taught and used by the Computer Hardware Servicing NC II students. Hope this Operating System Installation Checklist can help you. Please do comment if you have to add something important to add.

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