How to Monitor Laptop Temperatures
There are two main methods of measuring your laptop’s internal temperature. The first may already be available on your laptop. The Basic Input/Output System (BIOS) of any computer is nothing more than a set of instructions hard coded onto the motherboard and used to start other operations of the computer. Using the BIOS, you can make changes to your laptop’s configuration, turn sound on and off, manually tell the computer how to interface with certain components, and many other operations.
Among these basic operations, the modern BIOS typically includes a temperature monitor that measures both the temperature of the CPU and the temperature of the motherboard. The four components responsible for most of the heat generated in a laptop include the CPU, hard drive, memory, and graphics array (video card). The CPU, however, is the biggest culprit reaching temperatures in excess of 176 degrees Fahrenheit (80 degree Celsius) in some circumstances. By monitoring the CPU’s temperature, you can get a good idea of whether your laptop is operating at a healthy temperature or if some action on your part is necessary.
The motherboard temperature can give you a much more general sense of your laptop’s internal temperature. Remember that besides the CPU, the hard drive, memory, and graphics array are responsible for much of a laptop’s internal temperature. By monitoring both, you can get a sense (although not entirely accurate) of how healthy the inside of your computer is.
One of the problems in using the BIOS for internal temperature measures is the need to restart your laptop to gain access to those temperatures. Much more convenient would be a program that runs on your operating system’s desktop and reports, in real time, the internal temperatures.
Such programs exist. One of the more popular is ASUS’ Probe application that can tell you more than just the temperature of your computer for laptops equipped with Hardware Monitoring. If your laptop’s BIOS is capable of displaying the temperature of your CPU and motherboard, more than likely your laptop shipped with Hardware Monitoring. Included with ASUS Probe are several monitors to keep tabs on your laptop’s health including voltage readings on your CPU, memory, and 12 volt main (power supply). There are other applications that can measure the internal health of your laptop like ASUS Probe. Check with your laptop manufacturer’s documentation and website to see if a Hardware Monitor program is available for free.