Aug 25, 2009

Monitoring Tools for Checking CPU and System Temperatures

Today's PCs comes with many built-in sensors for checking the temperature inside the device.
Such sensors reside in the system's CPU, Motherboard, Graphic Card (GPU), Hard-Disk and more.

I'll list some useful tools I'm using for monitoring the system temperatures.

1. Speedfan


  • Temperature monitoring
  • Fan Speed Control
  • Voltage Reading
  • Hard-Disk SMART Checking
  • Event-Notification including Popup & E-mail alerting
  • Supports 32/64bit
  • Use the /s switch to do a silent install for mass-deployment.
  • On warm systems set the min/max fan speed to 100% so that the fan would be in full-speed all the time.
  • Use the options to "Start Minimize" and "Minimize on Close", than copy the Speedfan shortcut to the Start Menu Startup folder.
  • Make sure you choose the relevant temperature sensor to be shown on the system tray.

License: Freeware
YaronMaor Rating: 5/5 *****

2. HWMonitor


  • Reads the CPU Temperatures only but seperates the results for each CPU-Core.
  • Identify the running hardware make and model (i.e. which CPU, which Graphic Card...)
  • Portable (single EXE file that runs without installation)

Check the Maximum temperature values column to see the peak values since last boot.
Export the results to a text file (.txt) using the File menu.
License: Freeware. Has an extended paid version called HWMonitor Pro

YaronMaor Rating3/5 *** 
You can't control the fan speeds... I'm missing some background-monitoring functionality.

3. CoreTemp


  • Reads Temperatures, Voltage and fan Speeds
  • Portable (single EXE file that runs without installation)
  • Fully Supports XP/Vista/Windows7 32bit & 64bit
  • Can run in the background for monitoring & alerting


  • Set the Overheat Protection parameters for alerting while running in the background.

  • Use the Screenshot option in the Tools menu to save a picture file of the current window.

  • Supports Add-Ons to extend functionality

  • Developers can use a shared-library to communicate with the program

License: Freeware. 
YaronMaor Rating3/5 ***
You can only see the CPU temp... 

4. NextSensor

Temperature & Voltage monitoring.
Control for fan speeds
Advanced GUI with support for seperate icon on the system tray for each sensor.
Set the sensors you want to monitor and run minimized while enjoying up to three dynamic notification icons for each sensor.

License: Freeware. 
YaronMaor Rating2/5 **
Too graphically advanced so the functionality and quick-learning of use gets damaged...

5. SensorView


    • Notification at critical values.

    • You can set a threshold of concern and correction.

    • Sending email.

    • Graphs.

    • Showing chosen parameter in the tray.

    • Showing CPU usage.

    • Showing physical memory usage.

    • Showing HDD usage.

    • Showing NIC usage.

    • Log file for events and warning messages

License: Shareware. 19.95$-24.95$ (Used to be free until Dec/2005)

YaronMaor Rating3/5 ***
Not portable, Not freeware/Not Cheap...

If I could get the functionality of Speedfan in a portable version with the development toolkit of CoreTemp it would have been the best.
One important feature I haven't yet found is the ability to run as a system-service for Windows-Servers and 24*7 running PC's.
I usually install Speedfan for permanent solution and use HWMonitor for quick glance using my USB-Disk.

Do you know any other tool that's worth checking? comment me and I'd be happy to share a review.

Yaron Maor

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