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How to look at your motherboard’s data without opening up your PC

How to look at your motherboard’s data without opening up your PC

February 19, 2015 1:53 pm0 comments

The motherboard is the main component of the PC, including the chipset base of all its architecture, the socket we plug the processor into, the slots we use to install memory, the expansion slots where we install additional cards (e.g. graphics cards) and internal and external connectors that meet our storage and peripheral needs.

Knowing the manufacturer of the motherboard, model, socket, architecture, chipset, etc., is important when updating the BIOS, the system controllers, increasing memory, or updating the processor or other component.

The simplest way is to directly open the PC or review the documentation that comes with it. Unless we’ve bought and set up the motherboard ourselves, we won’t always have access to this information and there are better ways to get it than opening up the computer.

The Command Line

The first way is to use Windows’s command line. In Windows 7 we can access the command prompt via Start > All Programs > Accessories > Command Prompt. You can also access the command prompt through the search bar or Start menu by typing “cmd” or “command prompt”. On Windows 8/8.1, the easiest way to access the prompt is via the user menu, right-clicking on the start menu.

At any rate we’ll find ourselves confronted with a problem that will remind even the oldest users of MS-DOS. To retrieve the relevant informationi about your computer, simply type: “wmic baseboard get product,Manufacturer,version,serialnumber” (without quotation marks).

Depending on the motherboard, the order will give us more or less information but at a minimum we’ll always see the manufacturer, model, and chipset, which is enough data for us to look for more information on the Internet or directly peruse and download the manual offered by the manufacturer.

Third-party applications

There’s some pretty good third-party software (both free and premium) that provides a visual interface not only for the motherboard’s information but also for the rest of our installed components. One that we like is Speccy by Piriform (a software developer you may remember for CCleaner). Free and in Spanish, it offers a ton of information about the motherboard and other components, the processor, memory, storage, peripheral devices, etc.

Finally, once we know all the relevant information about our motherboard, we can search for applications the manufacturer has made for them that, in additional to providing general information, monitors temperature or voltage and usually includes BIOS updates, management of ventilator speed, or overclocking of the processor or memory. Manufacturers like Gigabyte, ASUS, or MSI have these sorts of devices available.

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