What hardware is your computer running? I have been building my own computers for over two decades, and I forget which motherboard, graphics card and exact processor I installed on the computer I’m typing on right now.
If you’ve purchased your computer, there’s a good chance that you also don’t know what hardware is inside of your computer.
How to Check Your Computer’s Specs
Every operating system is different, but you’ll find that most make it fairly easy to find your computer’s specs.
To find your specs, the latest iteration of the Windows operating system requires you to do the following:
- Right-click the start button on the bottom left of the screen
- Click on “Device manager”
The device manager will help you find which processor you have, graphics card and other hardware.
If you want to view your RAM, right-click the start button again and click on System. You’ll be able to see the processor and amount of installed RAM in this window.
Windows 8 uses Charms, which can be activated by pointing your mouse’s cursor to the top right-hand corner of your screen. You’ll then want to do the following:
- Choose Settings
- Click PC info
When you do this, you’ll be presented with all of the information about your computer’s internals.
Windows XP and Windows 7
Earlier versions of Windows make it a little more difficult to find all of your hardware. You’ll find that on Windows XP and Windows 7, you’ll need to do the following:
- Right-click on My Computer
- Click on Properties or System Properties
This window will be able to tell you the processor and memory installed.
All of this is basic information about your computer’s specs, but if you want to check your computer’s specs more thoroughly, you can download an app or software.
How to Check Graphics Card Specs Windows 10
You’ve probably noticed that we haven’t mentioned your graphics card yet, and the reason for this is that finding your graphics card is a little more complex.
You’ll need to enter the Device Manager, and if you can’t find it, then you can search for it on your computer.
Device Manager is often in your Control Panel.
You’ll be presented with a list of different hardware, but you’ll want to find Display Adapters.
Click on this section and you’ll find the type of GPU you have installed. You can also use this to find out what type of hard drive, CPU and other components you have installed.
How to Find Out What Motherboard you Have, Windows 10
If you want to upgrade your PC, you need to know which motherboard your system is running. The motherboard will dictate what you can and cannot upgrade.
I recommend that you go to your windows search bar, and type in “System Information.”
Click on System Information and then look for the following:
- BaseBoard Manufacturer
- BaseBoard Model
- BaseBoard Name
Now, I know on my older computer, the model is unavailable, so I recommend installing Speccy, which I discuss below.
You can also open up your computer and search for the model number on the motherboard itself.
You may have to clean off a lot of dust to find the model number.
Checking Your Computer Specs on Mac
Apple makes it simple and easy to find your computer’s hardware, and it’s universal across all modern versions of the Mac OS. On an Apple computer, you can:
- Click the Apple icon
- Choose “About this Mac”
And you’ll be presented with all of your computer’s specs.
Speccy, the free version, is able to help you determine a little more about your system’s hardware.
You’ll be able to view internal temperatures and more information about your RAM and motherboard.
Speccy is free to download.
What’s nice about Speccy is that everything is presented on one screen:
- Graphics Card
Since Speccy is a third-party software, it’s the easiest method of determining your computer’s specs because it works on all Windows operating systems.
If your computer is old (I am talking 5 – 10 years old), it may be better to just build a new one.
You will find that purchasing just a new GPU or CPU may lead to bottlenecks and not the performance that you had hoped.
But you can install memory to give your rig a little extra pep or another hard drive to add storage.