Intel's Core 2 Duo line-up is part of the company's second generation of processors based on the Intel Core microarchitecture, and it feature two cores on a single die. Intel introduced it in 2006, with single-, dual-, and quad-core models, and production continued until 2011. With the correct tools and equipment, installing a Core 2 Duo is a simple process.
Core 2 Duo processors are compatible with LGA775, or Socket T, motherboards. This socket was the first from Intel that used protruding pins that touch contact points on the processor. LGA775 motherboards come in several form factors with different features. Buyers can opt for those using older generation DDR2 memory or those that accept newer DDR3 RAM. They can also choose between standard ATX motherboards, micro-ATX, BTX, and mATX form factors. However, since production of new 775 processors has ceased, finding new motherboards may be difficult.
Users should follow electrostatic discharge precautions, including the use of wrist straps and gloves, during installation. They can install a Core 2 Duo processor with the motherboard installed or removed.
Opening the Motherboard
First, release the load lever at the side of the socket by holding it between finger and thumb, and pushing down and out to clear the retention tab. Rotate the load lever completely to its open position. Now that the load plate is free, rotate until fully open. For new motherboards, remove the pick and place (PnP) cap carefully without touching the socket pins. Visually inspect the socket for damage or foreign material by viewing it from various angles. Changes in light patterns indicate damage. If the motherboard is undamaged, remove the processor from its package by holding three of its corners. Use the other hand to remove the cover at its base.
Visually inspect the gold pads at the processor's base for damage. If the processor is undamaged, place it into the motherboard. To do so, first align the gold triangle indicating pin 1 on the processor with the corresponding yellow triangle on the socket. Holding it with only two fingers, lower it vertically into the socket with the golden pads facing downwards. Keep it flat and level to avoid pin damage. Now, rotate the load plate onto the processor's heat spreader. Finally, rotate the load lever and secure it to hold the load plate in place. A small amount of pressure is required.
A heat sink keeps the processor within operating temperatures. Boxed sets may include the heat sink with pre-applied thermal paste (Thermal Interface Material). Instal the heat sink by placing it over the socket and aligning the four motherboard holes. Ensure that cables are free before fastening it in place. Finally, connect the fan header to the motherboard header to power the heat sink fan.