In this tutorial we will look at a couple of ways to get the full system specifications for your computer using a couple of programs.
Note: Both of the programs above are free to use.
The first one we will look at is called Speccy by Piriform. You can download it directly from here for free and then run it. Please note that during the install, you may be asked if you would either like to install the ASK Toolbar, or if you don’t have Chrome installed, it may ask you if you wish to install Google Chrome. Uncheck these. The ASK Toolbar is of no use at all, and if you wish to install Chrome then do so at the official site. (Fantastic browser by the way)
Note: If you are going to use Speccy to help with an issue you are having and have been asked on a technical forum to supply your system specs, then Speccy will output this for you in a .speccy format containing all the relevant information. However, it will also output your Windows Product Key as well, which is something best not shown on open forums. The way to do this if you are going to post your specs to an open forum, is to go File>Post Snapshot. This will then create a URL address for you which will not show your Serial Number and it is safe to Copy and Paste the URL to a forum. I’d like to thank user nikki605 on the Piriform forums for the tip regarding the Serial Number issue.
The second program in this tutorial, CPU-Z, will not disclose your Windows Product Key and can be used on open forums.
Once you have run it you will see the following window. The information in your window will be different of course.
It will gather information on the following areas:-
As you can see, it gives you a lot of information on your computer. Now if you need more detail on one specific area, for example your CPU, just click on CPU on the left and it will give you all the details you will need running from current temperatures to clock speeds and individual Core Speeds.
One of the great things about programs like these is that they can be very helpful for helping out a user on a forum in diagnosing an issue, such as which drivers they require, or they can look at the S.M.A.R.T details on their HDD to see if there are any indications of a problem, as all the details needed are wrapped up nicely into one program, rather that having to get bits and pieces of information via Windows, which isn’t great at getting this much detail for you. Now, if you wish to give someone your full specs, just do the following:
Go to the top of the Speccy screen and select File>Save Snapshot and save the .speccy file to wherever you wish, such as the desktop as it’s easier to locate. Then just zip the file and email it to the person helping you, or attach it to your next post in the tech forum you are asking for help in.
Now, if you are the person trying to help the user, and you want to view the .speccy file they have sent in, you will first have to have Speccy installed on your machine. Then open Speccy, let it generate the information (couple of seconds) and then select File>Load Snapshot and browse to where you stored the other users .speccy file that you downloaded. This will then load the Speccy window with all their specs for you to browse, and hopefully let you help them out more.
Speccy is available for windows only.
You can download CPU-Z here. Once you have run the program you will see the following screen.
As you can see the layout is pretty simple, but contains a lot of very useful information regarding the CPU, RAM and Motherboard details, which are great for diagnosing a sytem or just for general information.
Again, if you wish to send the information for someone to look over, go to the About tab and either click on Save Report (.TXT) or Save Report (.HTML). I personally prefer it saved as an HTML file as it makes it a lot easier to read.
CPU-Z is available for Windows 2000, XP, Vista, Windows 7 (x86 and x64) There is a separate installer available for Windows 98 on the right hand side of their home page.
Now you will also need to know what power supply unit (PSU) you have in your system, especially if you have been asked for your system specs on a tech forum to assist in solving an issue. To do this you will first need to power off your computer and unplug it at the back of the machine. Now open the side of your computer and you will see the PSU in there. It will probably be located at the top rear of the machine as pictured below.
Get the information required from the sicker that will be attached to it. If there is no sticker, look for any other indications of the make, or take a picture of it.
As you can see on the sticker here belonging to my work computer the information required would be:
That’s it. I hope this has been useful. Any questions, then please ask in the comments below.
© 2011 TheGift73Hardware