Hardware identity.

By vashonbill ·
As a hobby I fix up older PCs and give them to kids in my community. Most of them are lower level Pentiums with some P2s and a few P3s. Is there software available to identify the hardware within a computer so that I can avoid removing hard drives, sound cards, video cards and searching for the elusive ID on motherboards?
Thank you.

This conversation is currently closed to new comments.

Thread display: Collapse - | Expand +

All Answers

Collapse -

Lots of them

by JamesRL In reply to Hardware identity.

Belarc Advisor is the one I have used.


Bets to try it for yourself.

You can google for hardware audit software download and get a raft of them.


Collapse -

Agree with James

by Kiltie In reply to Lots of them

Belarc is a good one, it produces a short 1 page summary with all the basic info, it's free.

I also use another free one, "EVEREST Home Edition" which you can get from many sources, here is one from MajorGeeks:


It gives a much greater detailed report, which can take some time to explore, in a menu GUI fashion, but also gives useful links.

Like James said, there are many about, Google for some more, if you want.

Collapse -

BIOS String

by TheChas In reply to Hardware identity.

Belarc Advisor relies on the information in the system registry to provide the list of installed hardware. If the correct drivers are not installed, Belarc won't give you much useful information.

Also, if you read the EULA for Belarc, you will find that it is ONLY for personal use. While you are not selling these PCs for profit, your use could be judged to be outside the realm of personal use.

What you want to look at to identify a motherboard is the BIOS string.

This is the line of letters and numbers that appear at the bottom of the screen during the POST memory test.

There are a number of web sites that will provide information on your motherboard from the BIOS string.

One that I like is:


Keep in mind that for OEM PCs like Dell, Compaq, HP and such, use proprietary motherboards. That is, the motherboard is made specifically for them. On these systems, you are better off using the model and serial number and looking up the information on the manufactures web site.

For getting information on PCI cards, start here:


Craig has some good lists and utilities that can make the task of identifying cards a lot easier.

Last, get a membership at www.driverguide.com if for no other reason than their extensive links to manufactures driver pages.


Related Discussions

Related Forums