Your friend, Alice, is working toward her A+ certification. She has decided that the best way to get the experience she needs before she

Your friend, Alice, is working toward her A+ certification. She has decided that the best way to get the experience she needs before she sits for the exam is to build a system from scratch. She has purchased an Asus motherboard and asked you for some help selecting the right processor. She tells you that the system will later be used for light business needs and she wants to install a processor that is moderately priced to fit her budget. She says she doesn’t want to install the most expensive processor the motherboard can support, but neither does she want to sacrifice too much performance or power.

The documentation on the Asus website (support.asus.com) for the ASUS Prime Z370-A motherboard provides this information:

The ATX board contains the Z370 chipset and 8th generation LGA1151 socket and uses up to 64 GB of DDR4 memory.

CPUs supported include a long list of 8th generation, 14-nm CPU Core i3, Core i5, Core i7, and Pentium processors. Here are five processors found in this list:

Intel Core i7-8086K, 4.0 GHz, 95 W, 12-MB L3 cache, 6 cores

Intel Core i5-8400T, 1.7 GHz, 35 W, 9-MB L3 cache, 6 cores

Intel Core i3-8300, 3.7 GHz, 62 W, 8-MB L3 cache, 4 cores

Intel Core i3-8100, 3.6 GHz, 65 W, 6-MB L3 cache, 4 cores

Intel Pentium G5400T, 3.1 35W, 4-MB L3 cache, 2 cores

Based on what Alice has said, you decide to eliminate the most expensive processors (the Core i7 and i5) and the least-performing processor (the Pentium). That decision narrows your choices down to a Core i3. Before you select one of these processors, you need to check the list on the Asus site to make sure the specific Core i3 processor is included. Look for the exact processor number—for example, the Core i3-8300.

You will also need a cooler assembly. If your processor doesn’t come boxed with a cooler, select a cooler that fits the processor socket and gets good reviews. You’ll also need some thermal compound if it is not included with the cooler.

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