Installing or Replacing a Video Card
This document applies to HP and Compaq desktop PCs with Windows 95, 98, Me, and XP.
This document provides step-by-step instructions to remove or replace a video card in an HP or Compaq desktop PC.
CAUTION:A power supply upgrade may be required for graphics card upgrade, check with graphics card supplier. You may also find power requirements information in the system requirements for the new video card.
NOTE:The steps in this article are not specific to one type of case design. Your PC model may look different than the images used in this article.
NOTE:Make sure the new video card meets the minimum recommendations for software applications you will be using.
Before you begin
- Many HP and Compaq PCs do not have an AGP or PCI Express (PCI-E) slot on the motherboard. Visually inspect the motherboard or refer to the product specifications for your model before attempting to install an AGP or PCIe video card.
- If you plan on upgrading a PCI-E graphics card, a power supply upgrade may be required for graphics card upgrade, check with graphics card supplier.
- Find out if your HP or Compaq PC has integrated video on the motherboard. When performing the steps in this article, onboard video will need to be disabled in the BIOS to avoid installation issues on some models.
- You will need a screwdriver.
- HP strongly recommends using an anti-static wrist strap and a conductive foam pad.
- Find a clear, flat, stable work surface over a floor that is not carpeted.
- If possible, print this document. You can refer to the printout after the PC is restarted or when an Internet connection is not available.
Step 1: Removing video drivers
Use the following steps to remove the current video software drivers and settings:
- In Windows XP, click Start, and right-click My Computer.In Windows 95, 98, and Me, right-click the My Computer icon on the desktop.
- Click Properties from the list that appears.
- In Windows XP, click the Hardware tab, then the Device Manager button.In Windows 95, 98, and Me, click the Device Manager tab.
- Click the plus sign (+) next to Display adapters.
- Click the video device title that relates to the brand of video card being used.
- In Windows XP, click Uninstall (the small picture of a computer overlaid by an X).In Windows 95, 98, and Me, click Remove.
- Click OK when a warning window appears.
- Close all programs and shut down the computer.
Step 2: Opening the case
Use the following steps to open the case:
WARNING:The edges of metal panels can cut skin. Be careful not to slide skin along any interior metal edge of the computer.
CAUTION:This product contains components that can be damaged by electrostatic discharge (ESD). To reduce the chance of ESD damage, work over a noncarpeted floor, use a static dissipative work surface (such as a conductive foam pad), and wear an ESD wrist strap connected to a grounded surface.
- Unplug all cables except for the power. Write down each cable location if you do not already know where it connects.
- Unplug the power cable and with the power cable removed press the Power button.
- Remove the screws on the rear of the desktop (Your PC case may appear different than the images in this document).
- Slide the side panel off from the rear of the desktop.
Step 3: Removing the video card or slot cover plate
If you are replacing a video card, use the following steps to remove it. If you are installing a new video card, remove the screw and cover plate next to an open slot in the chassis and skip to next step .
- Locate the video card inside PC case. Use the video cable connection on the back as a reference point.
- Disconnect any cables that are plugged into the back and sides of the video card, if any. Carefully note where each cable was installed.
- If the video card is an AGP card, undo the clasp that holds it in place, if any (The clasp may look different than the one shown in the image below).
- Remove the one screw that holds the video card to the PC case. If a metal plate covers up the screw, then remove this plate first.
- Grasp the video card by its edges and slide it out of its slot.
- If the card is still good, place it in an ESD container for safe storage and set it aside.
Step 4: Inserting the new card
Use the following steps to install a new video card:
- Insert the new video card into the proper slot. The card should slide in firmly and straight into its slot. The retaining bracket should slide against the inside edge of the back of the PC. The screw that attaches the card to the chassis should also line up to the hole in the chassis. If not, the card is probably incompatible with the chassis or is in the wrong slot.
- If the video card is agp, attach the clasp onto the card.
- Attach the card with one retaining screw.
- Connect all cables into their original positions.NOTE:Some video cards require an S/PDIF internal audio cable from the motherboard to the video card for audio used by DVI Dual link output.
Step 5: Replacing the cover
Step 6: Installing software and drivers
- Connect all cables and turn on the PC.
- If your PC was using on-board video (no video card), then disable on-board video in the BIOS to prevent possible setup problems:Press the F1 key repeatedly when the first screen appears.A BIOS setup screen displays (BIOS setup screens vary depending on model of PC).Use the directions on the BIOS screen to find and disable on-board video. The on-board video setting is usually on the Advanced page.NOTE:In some cases, the BIOS does not have the option to disable the onboard video. In this case, select AGP or PCI as the primary output. The BIOS and the operating system should then detect the new video card instead of the onboard video.Press F10 to save the settings and exit.
- Use the software installation instructions that came with the video card to install the new software. Normally, when Windows finds the new hardware, a message is displayed prompting to insert the installation CD.If the video card is a replacement card and is the same model as the one that was removed, Windows should find and install the software automatically. If needed, you may also install the Video driver using the HP Application Recovery software that comes with your PC.NOTE:Original and updated drivers may also exist on the HP Website. Go to Software and Driver Downloads site and enter your PC model number to find software and driver downloads.
- When Windows opens, it should find new hardware. The screen resolution will be low and will probably appear larger than usual. This is normal.
- If a window appears stating that it needs help finding particular files, place the driver disc from the video card manufacturer into a disc drive. If this does not help, browse to the following pathnames, one at a time, until the file is found:
- C:\Windows\system32NOTE:If files under these pathnames do not appear, double-click the C:\ hard drive icon from My Computer. Click Tools, Folder Options, and click the View tab. Remove the check marks from Hide protected operating system files, and select Show hidden files and folders. Click OK.
- Restart the PC when instructed by Windows.
The new video card should be installed and working correctly. If not, re-open the case and make sure the card is seated correctly and in the right slot. If it still is not working correctly, it may be necessary to contact the manufacturer of the video card.