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How to Find out Exactly What Hardware is in Your Windows 7 PC

written by: John Garger•edited by: M.S. Smith•updated: 12/26/2010

If you’ve ever wondered exactly what hardware you have in your PC, read this article to learn two simple methods of finding out.

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    Unless you are a computer geek and memorize every component in your PC, you may not know exactly the make, model, or version of the hardware in your computer. If you are running Windows 7, there are two simple methods you can use to find out exactly what hardware you have in your PC. Read on to learn how to explore the hardware in your computer.

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    Discover the Hardware in Your Windows 7 PC

    To begin exploring the hardware in your PC, click on Start and then click on Run. If you don’t have the Run command on your Start Menu, hold down the Windows key on your keyboard and hit R. Either method will bring up the Windows 7 Run dialog box.

    In the Run dialog box, type in MSINFO32. Note that this command is the same whether you are running a 32-bit or 64-bit version of Windows 7. Also, this command works with all flavors of Windows 7 (Home Premium, Professional, Ultimate, etc.). Now, click OK.

    Type MSINFO32 in the Run Box You should now be looking at the Windows 7 System Information Window. This window tells you just about everything you would ever need to know about the hardware in your PC. Notice that you can see what motherboard, CPU, and memory you have inside your computer.

    Windows 7 System Information However, the System Information window will only report the hardware that Windows 7 recognizes and knows is working properly. If you want a more comprehensive look at every component in your PC, you should use Device Manager.

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    Using Device Manager to See the Components in Your Computer

    To open Device Manager in Windows 7, click on Start and then right-click on My Computer. On the menu that pops up, click on Manage.

    Click on Manage in My Computer You should now be looking at the Windows 7 Computer Management window. In the left-hand pane, expand System Tools if it is not already expanded and click on Device Manager.

    Windows 7 Device Manager in Computer Management Notice that this window shows you all of the hardware that Windows 7 knows is connected to your computer whether it is working properly or not. For example, expand the Processors category and you can see exactly which make and model CPU is in your computer. In addition, you can use Device Manager to troubleshoot hardware, drivers, and other hardware and software errors.

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    Conclusion

    There are two simple methods you can use to see exactly what hardware you have in your PC. The Windows 7 System Information window is great for when you just want a quick overview of the hardware in your system. It is particularly useful for seeing the make and model of your motherboard and CPU.

    Device Manager is actually a troubleshooting tool where Windows 7 will inform you of all of the hardware that is and is not working in your computer. A bit more complex, Device Manager categorizes each type of component in your PC so you can more easily find what you are looking for.