Applying thermal paste with direct contact heatsink

Hi, I recently bought the parts for a new i5-750 gaming computer (with HD 5850 on an ASUS P7P55D-E PRO) to be cooled with a Hyper 212+ HSF. I've read a few different methods of applying thermal paste to a direct contact HSF but I was hoping that someone could tell me the best way to apply the paste.

Also, after it's built, which programs would be best to stress test the CPU/GPU and to measure performance?
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More about applying thermal paste direct contact heatsink
  1. prime95 works well as a stress tester, (furmark for the gpu if you need to test that too)

    put paste between the gaps in the heatpipes and a VERY small line on each heatpipe. you dont want too much but you also dont want space in there(the gaps)
  2. With this small line would I also spread it myself around the heatsink or when it sits on the CPU will it disperce enough?
  3. dont bother spreadin
  4. Please follow the manufacturers instructions for applying thermal compound. The manufacturers typically have different application methods for different types of cpu heatsinks and different types of cpu's.

    Prime95 is okay for stress testing.
  5. filled in gaps and used a box cutter blade to spread it as evenly and thinly as possible over the entire flat surface of the bottom of the heatsink.

    Q6600 - OCed at 3.20 GHz / 1.29V - Xigmatek Dark Knight - 30C Idle/48C Load using CoreTemp.
  6. I gonna echo the other skeleton guy up there.... follow directions of manufacturer.

    Interesting reading here on troubleshooting and contact pressure:
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