Tuesday, 16 Jul 2024

How to Configure And Setup Intel Compute Stick

The success of single board computers (e.g. Raspberry Pi) has shown that on-the-go computing is here to stay. While devices like Raspberry Pi are aimed more towards geeks and tinkerers, “stick PCs” are designed to be more user-friendly for everyday users. The first generation Intel Compute Stick, announced at last year’s CES, is undoubtedly the most popular stick PC on the market. If you’ve got one for yourself, you’re probably wondering, how do I get this thing up and running?

A few minutes, folks! That’s all it takes. But before we find out how to configure and setup Intel Compute Stick, let’s go through the basic stuff that you’ll need to get started.

Things you’ll need beforehand:

  • TV (or Computer Monitor) with an HDMI port.
  • Wireless Internet connectivity.
  • USB Hub (Check out some of the best USB hubs available).
  • Mouse & Keyboard, both preferably USB.
  • Wall socket to power up the Intel Compute Stick.

How to setup Intel Compute Stick?

Getting the Intel Compute Stick up and running is a piece of cake, essentially being a two-stage process. Plug in the hardware, configure the software, and you’re good to go. Here are the steps you need to follow:

Hardware setup

Use the image below as a reference, and follow the steps that follow.

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hardware config intel compute stick

  • Step 1: Connect the mouse and keyboard to the USB hub.
  • Step 2: Plug in the hub to the Compute Stick’s singular USB port.
  • Step 3: Use the included micro USB cable to connect the Compute Stick’s power port to the TV’s USB port for power supply.
  • Step 4: Finally, plug-in the Compute Stick to the TV’s HDMI port, via the HDMI extension cable (optional).

Now, power on the TV, and select HDMI as the source via settings. Once this is done, it’s time to move on to the software configuration part.

Software configuration

The Intel Compute Stick comes with Windows 8.1 (with Bing) edition on-board. When starting up for the first time, you’ll have to go through the same OOBE (Out-of-box experience) process, as you would while setting up Windows 8.1 on a normal PC. This includes connecting to the Wi-Fi network, setting up Time and Language settings, and more.

intel compute stick oobe

Note: During set up, Windows 8.1 prompts you to upgrade to Windows 10. However, this isn’t mandatory, and you can upgrade later if you wish to.

And we’re all set! Once everything is done, you’ll have the full Windows 8.1 running off the Intel Compute Stick, using the TV as the monitor. Take a look at the screenshot below:

intel compute stick running

Browse the web, play games, or edit your documents all you want. And when you’re done, simply shut down the Intel Compute Stick, just like a normal computer. How insane is that?

Frequently Asked Questions

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Q: Can I use a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse with the Intel Compute Stick?

A: While you can use Bluetooth keyboards and mice with the Intel Compute Stick, it complicates the setup process and taxes the single on-board chip used for both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity. It’s recommended to use USB keyboards and mice for a smoother experience.

Q: What are the advantages of the Intel Compute Stick?

A: The Intel Compute Stick presents an affordable and reliable way of computing on the go. It allows you to turn any HDMI capable display into a computer, providing the convenience of a full Windows operating system in a compact device.

Q: Can I upgrade to Windows 10 on the Intel Compute Stick?

A: Yes, you have the option to upgrade to Windows 10 if you choose to do so during the setup process. However, upgrading is not mandatory, and you can continue using Windows 8.1 if you prefer.


The Intel Compute Stick is a game-changer in portable computing. With its compact size and ability to turn any HDMI capable display into a computer, it offers a convenient and affordable solution for on-the-go computing. So give it a try and experience the power of a full Windows operating system in a tiny device. Keep exploring new technology trends with Eireview.