FIRST-TIME BOOT & BIOS
NOW YOU’VE GOT a bootable OS USB stick, you need to plug it into your new machine, add a keyboard and mouse, connect a screen to the GPU’s rear I/O, and power the machine on. Hammer the Delete key as soon as you hit the power button, and keep hitting it until you enter the BIOS.
To install Windows, we need to tell the BIOS to boot from the USB stick. Although the location of the boot order varies from mobo to mobo, the procedure is very much the same. In our build, head to the BIOS menu on the top, go down to “Boot Option Priorities,” click “Boot Option #1,” and select the disk that’s labeled “UEFI: Your USB Drive, Partition 1.” Hit F10, and select “Save Configuration and Exit.” The machine reboots into the USB stick.
You enter Windows Setup at this point. Choose your language, time, and keyboard layout, then hit “Next.” Windows then asks for a Windows Activation key—you can either enter this here, or do it later by hitting the “I don’t have a product key” button at the bottom. Next, you need to choose the version of Windows you want to install; for us, that’s “Windows 10 Home x64.” Accept the license agreement and hit “Next.” Then, when prompted, hit “Custom Install,” and choose your SSD as your primary drive. There are no names here, but each disk does specify its total size, enabling you to select the appropriate drive. Hit “Next.” If it throws up an error, or there’s a partition already there, delete the partition, and try again. Windows now installs. Once the system restarts, quickly pull out the USB stick, and let Windows finish the install. Now you can select the privacy options right for you, and either log in using your Microsoft profile, or create a localized account.