Check CPU Speed : How to do it for Various Systems

Check CPU speed as it determines how fast your processor can perform tasks. Nowadays, CPU speeds matter more than they did in the past, thanks to the advent of multi-core processors.

Still, it can be precious to check CPU speed while purchasing a new program to ensure that the computer system can handle it. It’s also very helpful to know how to check CPU Speed when you are overclocking for better performance.

Windows : Check CPU Speed

  • Open the System window.
    • Windows 7, Vista, XP – Right-click on My Computer in the Start menu and select “Properties”.
    • Windows XP – click the “General” tab after selecting “Properties”.
    • Windows 8 – Right-click on the Start button and select “System”.
    • All Versions – Press ? Win+Pause.
  • Find the “Processor” located in the “System” section, beneath the Windows edition.
  • Processor speed is measured in gigahertz (GHz). It is the speed of a single core of your processor when processor has multiple cores, each core will be this speed.
  • If processor is overclocked, the actual speed may not be shown.
  • Check how many cores processor has a multi-core processor. The number of cores will not be displayed in this window. Multiple cores does not necessarily mean the programs will run faster, but it can be a big boost for programs designed for it.
  • Press ? Win+R to open the Run dialog box.
  • Type dxdiag and press ? Enter.
  • Click Yes if prompted to check the drivers.
  • Find the “Processor” entry in the System tab. If your computer has multiple cores, you’ll see the number in parentheses after the speed. This will let you understand how many cores you have. Each core runs at approximately the same speed.

Mac : Check CPU Speed

  • Click the Apple menu and select “About This Mac”.
  • Find the “Processor” entry in the “Overview” tab to display the advertised speed of the processor. This may not be the speed of the CPU at which it is actually running at. The CPU slows itself down when it isn’t working hard to save energy and increase its lifespan.
  • Download the Intel Power Gadget which is free utility to monitor the CPU and report the actual operating speed.
  • Unzip the file and then double-click the DMG file to install Intel Power Gadget.
  • Download and install Prime95 to see the maximum speed of the processor, you must have to put a heavy load on the CPU.
  • Prime95 is designed to calculate prime numbers will max the CPU out.
  • Find the processor speed which can be picked up from the second graph in the gadget. It will display your processor speeds. The “Package Frq” is the current speed based on what the processor is working on.

Linux : Check CPU Speed

  • Open the terminal. Linux don’t show the actual speed that the processor is running at. Intel has released a tool called turbostat that you can use to check by installing it manually through the terminal.
  • Type .uname -r and press ? Enter. Note the version number that is displayed (X.XX.XX-XX).
  • Type .apt-get install linux-tools-X.XX.XX-XX linux-cloud-tools-X.XX.XX-XX and press ? Enter. Replace X.XX.XX-XX with the version number from the previous step. Enter the admin password if prompted.
  • Type .modprobe msr and press ? Enter to install the MSR module that will run the tool.
  • Open another terminal window and type .openssl speed to start the OpenSSL speed test, which will push the CPU to the maximum.
  • Return to the first terminal window and type .turbostat. Running this will display a variety of readouts about the processor.
  • Look in the .GHz column where each entry is the actual speed of each core. The TSC column is the speed reported normally to offer to see the difference overclock is making. The speeds will look low if yu are not pushing CPU with a process.

Windows (Overclocked CPU) : Check CPU Speed

Overclocked CPUs are processors in which their voltages modified to produce more power. Overclocking is useful to computer enthusiasts, as it offers more bang for your buck, but it can very much damage the components.

  • Download and install CPU-Z which is a freeware utility to monitor the components in the computer, designed for overclockers, and will report the exact speed that your processors are operating at. You can download it from cpuid.com/softwares/cpu-z.html.
  • CPU-Z will not install adware or toolbars during the setup process.
  • Run CPU-Z. By default, there will be a shortcut on the desktop to start CPU-Z. You will required to be logged in as an administrator, or have the administrator password in order to run it.
  • Start a CPU-intensive task on the computer and the processor will automatically slow down when it isn’t being used. Therefore, the speeds seen by you in CPU-Z will not show the full speed unless the processor is working hard.
  • A quick way to get CPU maxed-out is to run the Prime95 program designed to calculate prime numbers. It is used to perform stress tests on a computer.
  • Just Download Prime95 from mersenne.org/download/, unzip the program files, and select “Just Stress Testing” while running the program.
  • Check CPU speed to be displayed in the “Core Speed” field of the CPU tab. Expect to see minor fluctuations because the computer processes the Prime95 program.